Monday, September 22, 2008

Emerging Beauty

One lovely morning last week while walking down the driveway in San Juan I spotted this lovely gulf fritillary (I formerly identified it as a monarch and I was incorrect) butterfly drying its wings after emerging from the cocoon attached to the underside of a felt plant. I have a bad habit of walking with my head down, staring at the ground. But if my eyes were looking up I surely would have missed this rare moment.

5 comments:

Msrobin said...

I'm such a butterfly nut, but I have yet to see one hatch. What a treat! I have to admit yours doesn't look like a monarch, but I'm unsure what butterflies can be found in California.

Sheila said...

Msrobin,

I know it doesn't look like a monarch, but I assure you the other side of its wings were the familiar orange and black pattern that we associate with the monarch butterfly and it was right beside a passion vine that they love, so I assumed it was a monarch.

Msrobin said...

Since I've never seen an emerging monarch, I guess I didn't recognize it!

Kathleen said...

WOW! That's a fantastic photo Sheila! It looks like a Gulf Fritillary butterfly to me. Check out this link:
http://nathistoc.bio.uci.edu/lepidopt/nymph/gulf.htm
Looks like they are common in your area. I would say it paid to look down that morning for sure!

Sheila said...

Yes Kathleen, you are right! It is the gulf fritillary! I really do not know my butterflies! Thanks for the information!