One doesn't normally consider September, and late September at that, to be a prime time for finding butterflies. But then the extended mid-summer weather isn't exactly normal, either.
It had been a little more than two weeks since I had last been to the McGeachy Pond trail and checked on the butterfly bush by the west end parking lot, so I decided it was time again. I went out this past Tuesday morning....another hot sunny day.
The butterfly bush still had numerous flower clusters, with lots of butterflies vying for a spot from which to sip the nectar. It was hard to decide which butterfly to photograph first! The west end of the trail also had numerous butterflies, and overall I ended up with well over 150 butterflies of a dozen species! This area had been mine to cover during the butterfly count back in July, a time when butterfly diversity is usually at its peak, but on that occasion I got only half a dozen species and only a few dozen individuals at the most.
The following photos were taken on this visit. I didn't attempt photos of Cabbage White or Red Admiral.
It has been an excellent late season for Painted Lady. On this occasion I saw at least 30, and most looking quite fresh.
Along the trail was a profusion of goldenrod and New England Aster, among others, but it was clear that New England Aster was the favoured plant.
There were a few Clouded Sulphurs, another quite expected species.
Common Buckeye is another late season species. The one individual I observed wasn't my first of the year, but I've seen no more than half a dozen so far.