Our life living off the land in our log cabin, breathing fresh mountain air, and getting back to basics.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Stunning Pipevine Swallowtail Butterfly

The Pipevine Swallowtail is a stunningly beautiful butterfly that "glows" iridescent blue when the sun shines on it.
The outside of the wings has a bright arch of orange spots, this is a female...only they have the white spots along the edge of their wings.  
The two pictures above were taken last year, you will see them again when you click on my previous post link below, about the emergence and first flight of the very same butterfly.  For some reason, the Pipevine Swallowtails I have come across this season seem to be a little grey looking, and I haven't been able to get a good picture.

This is the Pipevine caterpillar...we see them all over the place this time of year...they are looking for a place to pupate (rest).  We have two I've been following...
...this one found a spot it likes on the post of the railing heading down to the basement...
...and successfully turned into a chrysalis...I will continue to watch this one closely, as it should emerge as a butterfly in a few weeks.

The other one I was following found a spot on our back porch screen, but the process seems to have stopped before the chrysalis was completed (it created the webbing between itself and the screen, but this is as far as it's gotten).  I've researched why this might occur (we saw this with another caterpillar last year) but have yet to identify a good answer.  We've stopped using that door for now, but they both found their resting spot the same day, so I am not very hopeful that this one will survive.

Last year, I had the good fortune of being in the right place at the right time (love when that happens) and watched this Swallowtail emerge from it's chrysalis and take it's first flight (click on the link, this is my post about it that I published last year), it's really fascinating and was actually quite emotional for me.  I hope you enjoy it.

Thanks for reading my blog, you are the best f/f/r/s/f's, see you tomorrow,


Dad/Pepere said...

Nature is awesome...thanks for sharing. Hugs!

Lise said...

So true dad, hugs back!