October Butterflies in the Foothills

By Dan Weisz

Web presentation by Douglas Everett at Hummingbird Market

Even though it is the end of October, butterflies still abound in the Catalina Foothills.  A Monarch Butterfly visited my milkweed plant a little while ago.

A White Checkered Skipper was flying amidst all of the Painted Ladies on this desert broom plant.

This moth is called a Veined Ctenucha.  It is active during the day and shows a blue hue when it flies.  The bright colors serve as a warning to birds and others that may attempt to prey on them:  their blood contains a noxious compound that might make the bird sick.

I discovered this Queen Butterfly Cocoon over ten days ago and it was this color already- a sign that the butterfly was ready to emerge..  I’m afraid the butterfly might never emerge, as it’s been awhile.  Still, the cocoon is a beautiful piece of on its own.

Lately, I’ve been seeing Painted Lady Butterflies everywhere.  This one was on the Gregg’s Mist Flowers on my back porch.  It looks like it had a close encounter with a bird at one point.

Profile of a Painted Lady

And a close-up portrait.

This Painted Lady still has its entire wings.

Is you spend a few minutes outside near flowering plants, you are likely to see these and other butterflies out and about enjoying our cooler autumn weather.