Rain Makes Everyone Happy
I saw this brightly colored skipper butterfly for the first time in our garden. Using the Butterflies and Moths of North America website I identified it as a male Zabulon Skipper. There is a regional checklist feature on the site that allows you to get a list of butterflies in your area - down to your county - which narrows the search and makes it more manageable. It lists the butterflies by species and there is a link with photographs and details on each one.
The big butterflies were out too. This male Eastern Tiger Swallowtail was warming up on the giant elephant ear before it got to work.
The female (below) was already out floating and gliding around the garden. They are so graceful and fun to watch.
Dragonflies were racing around the garden too, most happy with the replenishment of the water supply. This one took a very brief rest; they never perch for long as they are always on the go. I used my Stokes Beginner's Guide to Dragonflies to identify this as a female Common Whitetail. It looks very similar to the twelve spotted skimmer that I also often see here.
The bees were out in mass covering themselves in pollen. This bumblebee was so heavy on one of the lower branches of the Salvia it was touching the ground.
The Russian Sage and Purple Coneflowers I have planted together is one of the bee's favorite areas.
Summer is a time for the spring babies to grow and we are seeing plenty of them in the garden. Lots of juvenile Eastern Fence Lizards scurry around in the rocks and walls throughout our garden.
The once upon a time tadpoles that we had in our pond all spring and most of summer are now tiny toads. They are using the protection of the weeds near the pond as a safe haven. Good news for me, I have the perfect excuse not to weed this area of the garden.
Every time I walk near the area they scurry for shelter and as small and shy as they are become a real challenge to photograph. Can you make out the teeny tiny toad?
I hope the rain is finding you where ever you are! Most of the U.S. is in dire need of rainfall. For now our garden is over joyed with the recent 1.5 inches of rain we received over the weekend.