Today’s Butterfly Visitors

Butterflies are regular visitors to both my flower gardens these days with fall-like weather.
Here are a couple for you to enjoy today!

I just bought some of these red blanket flowers, so the butterflies and bees would have more flowers to nectar on.

Also I love flowers to cheer up my yard!

Painted Lady butterflies have been regular visitors to my yard for the last week.
Here is one on some white pentas.

Fall Migration is Underway for Monarchs

I haven’t seen any Monarchs yet in Allen, TX, but my Frostweed is just beginning to bloom. I’m hoping that will attract a few that will be migrating through to Mexico! It’s supposed to be one of their favorite nectaring plants.




The frostweed1

Fall Migration is Underway!
August 25, 2016 by Elizabeth Howard

Sightings of southbound monarchs, intense nectaring, and the first overnight roosts are being reported.

Monarch Butterfly in Iowa
Amy Evoniuk

At this time of year, monarchs change dramatically in physiology and in behavior.Responding to Daylength
Declining day length is the central cue that triggers the monarch’s migratory state. In the northern breeding range photoperiod is falling by 20 minutes this week. This sends the signal that it’s time to go to Mexico.Becoming Migratory
Watch for signs of migratory monarchs:

  • flying in directional flight
  • clustering in overnight roosts
  • nectaring intensely

Emerging in Diapause
Beginning in mid-August in the north, adults are in diapause when they emerge from the chrysalis. They are full grown — but not reproductively mature. Their reproductive development is on pause. These monarchs will not complete development and begin to mate until next spring in Mexico.

Beginning a Long Life
The same hormone deficiency that leads to diapause also leads to increased longevity. Summer monarchs live only 2-6 weeks; migratory monarchs live up to 8 months.

Accumulating Fat
Monarchs are shifting focus now from breeding to intense feeding. They must build body fat to fuel migration and to survive the winter in Mexico.

Fall migration 2016 is underway. Please share your sightings and help tell the story of the monarch’s long journey to Mexico.

Signs of Migration
Migratory monarch butterfly flying in directional flight
Directional Flight
Elizabeth Howard
Monarch Butterflies Clustering in Roosts
Clustering in Roosts
Darlene Burgess
Monarch Butterflies
Intense Nectaring
Amy Evoniuk
Fall Migration: What to Report
When you see a monarch—nectaring, flying, roosting, or breeding—we want to know about it.


How you can help Monarch Butterflies at Sanctuary in Mexico
Report Your Sightings
What to Report to Track Fall Migration Monarch Butterfly: Adult Sighted Monarch Butterfly: Egg or Larva Sighted
What to Report Adult Butterflies
map | list | animation
Eggs and Larvae
map | list
Monarch Butterfly Migration Map: Fall Roosts, Fall 2016 Monarch Butterfly Migration Map: Peak Migration Fall 2016 Monarch Butterfly Migration Journal
Fall Roosts
map | list | archives | animation
Peak Migration
map | list | animation
Next Update September 1, 2016
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Following the Stages of the Black Swallowtail

Several caterpillars appeared on my parsley plants. I noticed that the parsley was almost gone, so I made a trip to the grocery store to buy some organic parsley. I brought the remaining caterpillars inside my house and placed them in the container with parsley. I continued to add parsley until they morphed into chrysalis. Once they were both in the chrysalis stage, I took the container out on my back porch where it was protected, but they were back amongst my herbs where they started. They each took 9 days to complete this stage. They emerged 2 days apart! Happily I was able to enjoy seeing each of them before they took flight into the world!

Black swallowtail Fesating on Parsley

Black Swallowtail Feasting on Parsley

Black swallowtail caterpillar inside a plastic container with parsley.

Black swallowtail caterpillar inside a plastic container with parsley.

black swallowtail chrysalis

Black Swallowtail Chrysalis

Black Swallowtail Sept. 9,2014

Black Swallowtail Sept. 9,2014

Butterfly on Chocolate Mint

Black Swallowtail Butterfly resting on my Chocolate Mint.

second black swallowtail Sept 11,2014

Second black swallowtail Sept 11,2014

Happiness is new blooms in the yard!

 I rediscovered today that everyone needs an activity/hobby/exercise that makes you stop worrying and you just enjoy life for a little bit of time. Today mine was watering my flower beds and then taking pictures of my Obedient flowers. They die back and come back every year from their roots and burst into bloom in late August! I love perennials! Enjoy!

Obedient Flowers 2014

Obedient Flowers in Front Yard 2014