This Small-eyed Sphinx Moth (Paonias myops) was resting on my vehicle on May 9, 2016 near Atlanta, Georgia. I have been wanting to post it for some time, but have been happily busy with some other responsibilities. I found a stick, got the moth to climb onto it, and transferred the moth to an azalea bush before driving away. Enjoy!
I wish I had a better camera that would take photographs that were more clear, precise, and detailed. With my small camera, I have to zoom-in from a distance to get close-up shots of butterflies, such as that of this Painted Lady, or Vanessa cardui. Taking about 80 photographs of the Painted Lady, flitting about the garden flowers and drinking nectar, I would estimate that about six pictures turned out with enough crispness and clarity to consider including in this blog post.
At any rate, butterfly watching is an exciting and interesting pastime for me. Whether or not my photographs turn out really well, I enjoy observing the butterflies darting from flower to flower, completely engrossed in drinking the precious nectar on these extremely hot days of summer. All of the photos in this blog post, I took on July 9; and during the same week, I observed the most butterflies of the year – so far – floating about. Included in those I saw were this Painted Lady, as well as several Tiger Swallowtails, a Black Swallowtail, a Cabbage Butterfly, and many orange Skippers.
I enjoy observing the Painted Lady as it flies because it’s movements are so quick, pointed, and sometimes even seem erratic. It generally flies so quickly that one may find it difficult to categorize while zooming around in the air. In flight, it’s appearance resembles that of the Question Mark and Red Admiral. One may have to wait until it lands before making the ultimate determination of it’s classification.
So, for a couple of weeks, this Painted Lady is our resident butterfly, picnicing in the backyard. I have seen it nearly each day for more than the past week, enjoying the flowers’ sweet juice. It is a beautiful and welcome flower garden visitor, and is one of the important reasons for planting the flowers. Attracting many and various types of butterflies, including this Painted Lady, is a satisfying and fulfilling activity. And, it allows me to “butterfly watch” and take as many photos as I like, even though only a few have any worth.