Tuesday - July 23rd, 2024

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Boulder Butterfly Bonus Bonanza: Flitting Flitillary & Spring Azure

pic Gwen Dordick

Fritillary! These butterflies remind me of the finch. There are a plethora of types of fritillary, as there are pages of different finches in the bird ID books. They share a common challenge. Most look about the same. Google ID, generally amazing, was great in ID’ing this as a “fritillary,” and different pictures ID it as different types of fritillary. Some look a little different. Some, to me, look the same.

pic by Gwen Dordick

A popular option, ID’d by several of the pics, is the Nokomis Fritillary. These Fritillaries were photographed by our Photographer of the Month, Gwen Dodrick, on a local trail.

pic Gwen Dordick

pic Gwen Dordick

The Spring Azure did not seriously challenge Google Pic ID. All of the sample pictures ID’d the butterfly as the Spring Azure. I find that far more reassuring.  The spring azure is one of the first butterflies to appear in the spring. In Lafayette, we saw Yellow Swallowtails first, and that is common for us.

There are differences of course in the various Fritillary butterflies. The edges of the wings have some differences in patterns. And, for added assistance in the ID, the edges of the wings have some differences in patterns. Yes, I repeated myself. Seriously, that is the biggest difference I see. To add to the confusion, there is a plant with the same name. Happily it is easy to tell the difference between a plant and a butterfly!

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