lavendertook: (Default)
( Aug. 14th, 2016 07:05 pm)
So I did go out to grocery shop yesterday, but since the water was almost too hot on Thursday night, I flaked on going to the pool this weekend. Not a lot done, but thank you so much to my friends who help me to not feel too bad about that.

Here's some critters I've seen by the lake over the past month for you:

I believe that is an American Painted Lady butterfly.

Read more... )
lavendertook: (lavender candle)
( Nov. 20th, 2015 06:01 pm)
Happy Birthday, [ profile] cali_se!!! May the evergreen magic of the natural world be with you today in full and always. Here's some pics of it I hope will brighten your day:

From a more brilliant autumn a couple of years ago, down by Greenbelt Lake.

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A very happy birthday to my friend[personal profile] saraqael!!! You've been busy as a bee getting your home ready for market, and may this mark the beginning of a time in which you get to soar and flutter where you will in peace and joy.

Tiger swallowtail and bee snacking on butterfly weed by the lake.

I thought I'd post a belated happy birthday greeting to [ profile] verangel with pics of another lovely Ver- below. Happy birthday, sweetie!


Thursday, Oct 4th was the last day I saw Verid and Pro, and I'm pretty sure it was them, as I mentioned in a previous post, and will detail below. So that is the lovely Verid above on that day, just posing to give us a brilliant final farewell. The following 6 pics are also of her on that day.

Memories of monarchs and milder weather below . . . )
I have another job interview tomorrow afternoon, and this feels like it could be a really good one. Please cross your fingers for me.

Also, I saw Verid and PR Officer--I'll call him "Pro" from here on out--late this afternoon during the first couple of hours of sunshine all week. Only two monarchs around the lake down in a patch of wildflowers, and a male and female. When I first saw the girl she made a bunch of circles around me, so I'm thinking it really is Verid and she recognized my scent, and maybe was trying to determine if this was the same human. (-; And that probably really was them in the misadventure on Sunday. I got some nice pics of them and I'll post them when I have some time.
In which I may have rescued Verid a second time . . .

This is a true story, and I don't blame you if you don't believe it, because I hardly believe it, but it's what happened and I do have a witness. And to whoever came up with this plot obstacle to put me up against, a big SCREW YOU, because it is terribly, terribly contrived. Stop stretching credibility just to torture me, ' kay?

So on Sunday, A., a relative I've never gotten to spend one-on-one time with before, came to visit me and was such delightful company, my throat was sore all yesterday from chatting so much. I took her out to Ithilien Greenbelt Lake in the afternoon to walk around it, and hoped maybe we'd chance to see Verid or PR Officer along the way.

As we were walking the path, we approached a family walking ahead of us, a woman and man and 3 or 4 small children. I didn't completely register it at the time, but they were all carrying butterfly nets. No, really! And a little boy in the middle of the path was carrying one of those expensive mesh butterfly cages half the size of my dollar store hamper that I mentioned in the last post. As we got closer, and I strained to see, much to my horror, there was a monarch butterfly inside. I walked much faster to catch up to them and could see it was indeed a female monarch AND IT COULD VERY WELL BE VERID! Oh boy.

In Henneth Annun on Greenbelt Lake continues below . . .  )
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lavendertook: (monarch butterfly name)
( Oct. 1st, 2012 04:39 am)
So Verid emerged from her chrysalis on Wednesday afternoon. Since they're not very active the first day, I didn't feel that great, and we were supposed to have thunderstorms that evening, I decided to keep her in and bring her down to the lake on Thursday.

Verid's Release Party . . .  )

Fare Thee Well, Lovely Verid, Farewell . . . )
Mission Control, we have lift off!

In the middle of the night, the chrysalis looked like this, with her colors deepening within the clear casing:


Tricksy little chrysalis . . . )

I got up in the morning and her body was shiny black, but she wasn't making a move out of her casing and I had a terrible sinus headache. So I took some mucinex and went back to bed for an hour and a half. And when I got up, there she was a butterfly, all pumped up and pretty, and apparently female. I named her Verid, after a Joan Slonczewski character from Daughter of Elysium.

Female monarchs have wider back veins on their wings, while male monarch's have two black pheromone spots on their lower wings, so it's easy to sex the butterflies, and Verid looks female. A couple of websites I was looking at said you can sex the chrysalis, which I hadn't known before. They said the females have a little line below a set of black dots on the dome of the chrysalis between the wings. I didn't see it, so I thought she might be male. However, that spot was on the back side from all the pics I took, and I would have had to turn the box upside down to see the spot clearly, so I viewed it through the glass that was covered with some of her webbing. It was probably too faint for me to see through the webbing, or possibly, she doesn't have one and is on the intersexual continuum. Whatever the case, she made sure that her most glittery side was best in view for me to look at and take pics of for us, and glitteriness is more important than which sex/gender you are, so I'm grateful to Verid for making sure to share her fabulousness with me. (-:

Click here to see more of Verid's fabulousness . . .  )
Monarch Butterfly Day 14.12, 9-26-12
Mission Control, T-minus less than 1 day to launch. Day 13. All systems go and darkening on schedule.

Monarch Chrysalis Day13.1, 9-25-12

If not tomorrow, then I expect the monarch butterfly to hatch Thursday morning at latest. He'll be a crumpled thing with tiny wings and he will need to hang upside down and flap for a couple of hours to get the juices out of his swollen abdomen and into his wings.

They take 10-14 days to hatch, and cooler weather and being a last generation monarch pushes it to the longer side of the gestation. The last generation of monarchs are those born in late August/September, like this guy. The first 3 or 4 batches of monarchs hatched between March and late summer last only a couple of weeks to mate, lay eggs, and then die. But the fall brood could last 6 to 9 months because they fly south for the winter to hang out in Mexico in a particular fir tree, if they are east of the Rockies. A few make it to the Caribbean. Monarchs west of the Rockies go to hang out in eucalyptus trees along the southern California coast. Then they all head north in March or April to do the mate and die thing because the milkweed that the caterpillars eat doesn't grow down where the butterflies hang out for the winter.

This has been your Wednesday Bio Factoid.

I'm so sorry I'm so behind in replying to comments. Time keeps running out on me and I figure you'd rather me post things and comment on your entries first, so I'm doing that and hope to get back to replying as I can.

More pics of Day 13 of Monarch Chrysalis below . . .  )


lavendertook: (Default)


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