Saturday, July 27, 2013

Great Spangled Fritillary and White Admiral

You would not believe the times I've seen these two butterflies and hoped they would stop fluttering and alight quietly for a moment.  And when they eventually did, you would not believe the number of photos it took to get a few good ones!  So here they are.

The 'Great Spangled Fritillary' has got to be the neatest name for a butterfly.  This one alighted briefly on a coneflower in our garden.  It flits around the garden frequently, tantalizing me with the orange colour I always hope is a monarch - but so far not this year.  Never-the-less, this is a beautiful butterfly with striking patterns on both upper and lower wing surfaces.
The underside hind wing is heavily silvered, like several of the other fritillaries, gleaming if the light hits it at the right angle.  It's just been around for 2-3 weeks now, seeming to be a July butterfly.

I've seen the White Admiral for several weeks longer, since earlier in the spring, and often see it fluttering past, but here it sat on a Gooseneck Loosetrife flower and allowed me to approach quite closely.  At a distance all you notice are the dark wings and the white band, but up close the blue and orange borders of the hindwings show up clearly.

The underside of both fore and hindwings are quite different, with obviously more orange spotting, and seemingly a lighter brown background rather than the almost black of the upper wing.

I like to think that the plants we have in the garden are serving them well!  I've thought about signs of the changing seasons for years, but only recently concluded that July is the month of the butterflies.


  1. Beautiful butterflies and lovely captures!

  2. Marvelous.... I love your butterflies. We have so few of them here in our area. Don't know why --but there are very few around... I miss them. However, we do have lots and lots of BEES --which love our flowers...

    That White Admiral is my favorite one today... Wow!

  3. You got some really great shots of these beautiful butterflies.

  4. They are so beautiful! I'm glad you decided to try and take pictures, since these are simply stunning. I love the dark one with the white accent. Perfection! :-)

  5. I've had the same problem!!!!!
    The fritillary seem to have ADHD!!!!!
    Great photos!

  6. so beautiful, esp the first, with great selective focus !

  7. Lovely shots of the butterflies. I remember being astounded to learn that the White Admiral and the Red-spotted Purple butterflies were the same species, just different color variations. Amazing! Your last photo captures the spottiness very well.

  8. Thank you all for your kind comments. If only all butterflies would sit still for a moment when I'm there with my camera!