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Midlands Chapter — Clemson Sandhills Research & Education Center — May 6, 2017

Carolina Butterfly Society Midlands Chapter Trip Report
Clemson Sandhills Research and Education Center
Columbia, SC

Overnight temperatures dropped to 49 degrees so we decided to begin our walk at 12:00 instead of 10:00. The skies were mostly sunny with temperatures in the low to mid 60’s, but it was windy. Part of our walk took us through the woods which was a welcome respite from the wind. Ten years ago on this date, the Midlands Chapter took their first walk in this area. At the end is a comparison of species then and now. In attendance were Susan Creed, Jean Fontaine and Dave and Marty Kastner.

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 1
Spicebush Swallowtail 1
Palamedes Swallowtail 5
Cloudless Sulphur 1
Summer Azure 1
Azure species 2
Eastern Tailed-Blue 1
Variegated Fritillary 10
American Lady 1
Common Buckeye 14
Red-spotted Purple 1
Silver-spotted Skipper 3
White Checkered-Skipper 3
Fiery Skipper 1
Lace-winged Roadside-skipper 1 (FOY)

Here is a comparison of species from ’07 to ’17.
’07 – 10 species, ’17 – 14 species
Seen in ’07 but not in ’17 – Sleepy Orange, Eastern Comma, Clouded Skipper.
Seen in ’17 but not in ’07 – Spicebush Swallowtail, Palamedes Swallowtail,
Eastern Tailed-Blue, Red-spotted Purple, White Checkered-Skipper,
Fiery Skipper and Lace-winged Roadside-skipper.

Marty Kastner
Richland County, SC

Aiken County, SC Trip — April 29-30, 2017

Carolina Butterfly Society Trip Report

The Carolina Butterfly Society held walks in Aiken County, SC on April 29 and 30. Both days began cloudy and overcast but there was some sun in the afternoon. Temperatures were in the low to upper 80’s.

Gum Swamp Road
April 29, 2017 10:00-3:30 In attendance were Jerry and Pat Bright, Jackie Hill and Dave and Marty Kastner (leaders).

Spicebush Swallowtail 1
Black Swallowtail 5
Palamedes Swallowtail 2
Zebra Swallowtail 13
Checkered White 1
Cabbage White 10
Cloudless Sulphur 13
Sleepy Orange 3
Orange Sulphur 2
Eastern Tailed-Blue 8
Variegated Fritillary 1
Silvery Checkerspot 1
Pearl Crescent 17
Question Mark 3
Eastern Comma 2
Anglewing species 1
American Lady 6
American Snout 68
Common Buckeye 4
Red-spotted Purple 3
Hackberry Emperor 8
Carolina/Intricate Satyr 1
Gemmed Satyr 2
Satyr species 1
Monarch 2
Horace’s Duskywing 2
White Checkered-Skipper 4

American Lady larva 1

Aiken Gopher Tortoise Heritage Preserve
April 30, 2017 10:00-2:00 In attendance were Caroline Eastman, Jim and Jackie Hill with two guests, John Demko, and Dave and Marty Kastner (leaders who were an hour late due to a flat tire caused by a nail!).

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 1
Palamedes Swallowtail 1
Spicebush Swallowtail 2
Swallowtail species 1 (probably Spicebush)
Cabbage White 1
Cloudless Sulphur 4
Common Buckeye 31

Variegated Fritillary larva 6
American Lady larva 1

Marty Kastner
Richland County, SC

Triangle Chapter — Duke Forest — April 15, 2017

Ten of us explored the “Wooden Bridge Rd” hike in Duke Forest (Orange Co., NC) this afternoon (4/15/2017).  We enjoyed a nice hike finding butterflies, dragonflies, snakes (racer, rat snake, N. Water Snake), wildflowers, and other goodies.  Thanks to everyone who showed up and helped spot things!  Here’s our butterfly list:
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 15
Cloudless Sulphur 1
Eastern Tailed-Blue 6
Azure sp. 1
American Snout 1
Pearl Crescent 6
Polygonia sp. 1
American Lady 1
Red-spotted Purple 2
Gemmed Satyr 5
Carolina Satyr 30
satyr sp. 15
Silver-spotted Skipper 1
Juvenal’s Duskywing 2
Zabulon Skipper 1

Dragonflies included Swamp Darner, Springtime Darner, Ashy Clubtail, Stream Cruiser, Blue Corporal, Common Baskettail, and probably something else I forgot to write down!

Jeff Pippen

The Great Dismal Swamp SP NABA Count — April 13, 2017

5 intrepid counters didn’t expect diversity and got that with just 16 species, we missed one of our targets Hessel’s hairstreak though back in the cedars I did see one suspect hairstreak that circled high into the tree canopy.  There was almost no nectar around the host plant stands, little elsewhere too, really a tough bug to find though as I’ve missed it much more than found it.

Numbers were there, as we broke the one day high count of 900 Palamedes Swallowtail that was set on 9 Sep 2000.  Our total of 1206 was quite accurate, as there was very little else to distract us so I counted them closely.  The massive block of swamp was full of them, border areas or outlying ag fields were devoid of them!

We may consider another count attempt in late July during the second brood of Hessels…

85 Zebra Swallowtail
32 E tiger Swallowtail
7 Spicebush Swallowtail
1206 Palamedes Swallowtail
4 Falcate Orangetip
5 Orange Sulphur
1 Cloudless Sulphur
26 Red-banded Hairstreak
14 E tailed-blue
5 Holly Azure
1 Summer Azure (fresh)
1 Variegated Fritillary
1 Eastern Comma
38 Pearl Crescent
6 American Lady
2 Silver-spotted Skipper

Brian Bockhahn

Triad Chapter — Occoneechee Mountain State Park — April 2, 2017

Occoneechee Mtn Elfin Trek 4-2-17

Our timing was right this time…we saw Brown Elfins on our Elfin Trek.

It has become almost an annual event for the Triad Chapter to look for Brown Elfins on the aptly named Brown Elfin Knob Trail at Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area in Orange County just outside Hillsborough. Brown Elfins have a very narrow flight period in early spring. Some years we’ve hit it right, some years not.

On Sunday afternoon, April 2, we headed for this site just a bit over an hour east of the Triad. When we arrived at the parking area, we were surprised to find it full. Coincidently, Brian Bockhahn, education specialist for NC Parks, was leading a butterfly walk, and there were at least 35 people there for the short hike in addition to the normal weekend crowd. His target was Brown Elfins, as well, so Brian graciously allowed us to join his group.

With Brian in the lead, we didn’t get far before we began seeing butterflies. Several Eastern Tiger Swallowtails flitted by, and we saw Eastern Tailed-Blues, Silver-spotted Skippers, and Juvenal’s Duskywings within just a few yards up the gravel road. Not much further along as we were entering the woods Brian pointed out a Carolina Satyr, noting that it is the “mascot” butterfly of the Carolina Butterfly Society. By the end of the walk the group collectively had seen a dozen species, including our target butterfly. Here is Brian’s tally:

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 12
Spicebush Swallowtail 1
Cabbage White 1
Brown Elfin 6
Eastern Tailed-Blue 3
Variegated Fritillary1
Gemmed Satyr 1
Carolina Satyr 8
Silver-spotted Skipper 3
Juvenal’s Duskywing 24
Sleepy Duskywing 1
Sachem skipper 1

Dennis Burnette

Midland Chapter — Cheraw State Park and Carolina Sandhills NWR — April 1, 2017

What a beautiful day to butterfly and some people had a four Elfin species day!  Many of us came away with at least one lifer.  It was sunny with temperatures ranging from around 59 to a high of 79.  Chris Talkington was our leader.  In attendance were: Gene Schepker, Lois Schneider, Ann Newsome, Sven Halling, Gary Carter, Leigh Anne Carter, Becky Carter, Jean Fontaine, Laura Domingo, Dennis Forsythe, Rob Gilson, Lenny Lampel, Ethan Lampel, Shawn Smolen-Morton, Will Stuart, Rob Van Epps, Kevin Metcalf, Susan Creed, Cheryl Talkington, and Dave and Marty Kastner.  Will Stuart was our hero, finding the Frosted Elfin in the morning and leading the group back to the same spot in the afternoon where we found three.

Cheraw State Park
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail   3
Spicebush Swallowtail   2
Palamedes Swallowtail   9
Black Swallowtail   1
Zebra Swallowtail   1
Sleepy Orange   1
Great Purple Hairstreak   2
Red-banded Hairstreak   1
Brown Elfin   3
Henry’s Elfin   5
Eastern Pine Elfin   1
Eastern Tailed-Blue   2
Summer Azure   2
Azure species   1
Pearl Crescent   1
American Lady   11
Common Buckeye   3
Carolina/Intricate Satyr   3
Silver-spotted Skipper   1
Zarucco Duskywing   2
Juvenal’s Duskywing   1
Duskywing species   1

Carolina Sandhills NWR
Black Swallowtail   1
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail   2
Spicebush Swallowtail   3
Palamedes Swallowtail   2
Zebra Swallowtail   1
Colias species   1   (white form)
Cloudless Sulphur   8
Sleepy Orange   3
Frosted Elfin   3   (ovipositing)
Gray Hairstreak   1
Eastern Tailed-Blue   6
Azure species   1
Variegated Fritillary   1
American Lady   2
Common Buckeye   3
Pearl Crescent   1
Red-spotted Purple   1
Juvenal’s Duskywing   3
Zarucco Duskywing   1
Duskywing species   7

Marty Kastner

Triangle Chapter — Duke Gardens Spring Plant Sale — April 1, 2017

The Triangle Chapter conducted its first community outreach and fundraising event Saturday, April 1, 2017 from 8am to 12pm at the Duke Gardens Spring Plant Sale. Brian Bockhahn, John Jarvis, and Lori Carlson answered gardening questions, provided basic butterfly education, and talked about the CBS organization. A couple of Eastern Black Swallowtails had eclosed from overwintering as a chrysalis and were the stars of the morning.

A trial fundraising was conducted by offering Asclepias tuberosa, common fennel, and assorted cultivars of lantana. The lantana sold out within 90 minutes and the tuberosa plants sold out within three hours. All but two of the fennel were sold making the last-minute effort a success!

Triad Chapter – Greensboro Arboretum/Guilford County – Oct 16, 2016

CBS Triad Chapter,

On Sunday, Oct. 16, four of us visited the Greensboro Arboretum in the morning, then went into northwest Guilford County, NC, near the Forsyth County line to look along two dirt roads.

We saw a total of 5 Monarchs. While driving, we saw several Cloudless Sulphurs in addition to those at the two sites. Frost Aster was the primary nectar plant, although a few other species were being visited, including Jewelweed in damp areas. There were many unidentifiable grass skippers moving among the flowers at a distance. We identified a total of 15 butterfly species.

The temperature high was 78 degrees under a sunny, sky with a light breeze. The first number in the list below is the arboretum; the second number is in the northwest corner of the county.

Orange Sulphur 0; 1
Cloudless Suphur 8; 9
Little Yellow 0; 4
Sleepy Orange 3; 5
Eastern Tailed-Blue 0; 2
Variegated Fritillary 0; 2
Pearl Crescent 4; 10+
Common Buckeye 0; 4
Viceroy 0; 2
Monarch 2; 3
Common Checkered-Skipper 10+; 20+
Clouded Skipper 1; 2
Fiery Skipper 10+; 5
Sachem 5; 5
Ocola, Skipper 2; 0

Species total 15

Attached are a few photos from yesterday.


Midlands Chapter – SI Group Butterfly Count – Sept 17, 2016

Below is Diane Curlee’s trip report for the SI Group in Orangeburg.

Butterfly Count
Sat., September 17, 2016
SI Group “The Hundred Acre Woods”
Weather: temperature 71 ͦF; overcast; light breeze
Beginning Time: 10:00AM
Ending Time: 1:00PM

Seven people:
Jerry Bright
Pat Bright
Jean Protho
Alice Clark
Sharon Jones
Arthur Sweatman
Diane Curlee

Butterfly List:

– Tiger Swallowtail – 3

– Southern Pearly Eye – 1
– Carolina Satyr – 2

Heliconians & Fritillaries
– Variegated Fritillary – 2
– Gulf Fritillary – 1

– Goatweed Leafwing – 1; 1 caterpillar

True Brushfoots
– Common Buckeye – 4

Grass Skippers
– Clouded skipper – 1
– Little Glassywing – 1
– Southern Skipperling – too many to count (they were everywhere)
– Fiery skipper – 3

Spreadwing Skippers
– White Checkered-Skipper – 6
– Cloudywing species – 1

– Cloudless Sulphur – 1
– Sleepy Orange – 3

– Red-banded Hairstreak – 1
– Gray Hairstreak – 2

33 individuals + Southern Skipperlings – everywhere!

Arthur is to be given credit for the Southern Pearly Eye. He saw it fly up on our drive into The Hundred Acre Woods. It landed on a tree. It looked like a very thin shelf fungi clinging to the tree! It stayed still allowing us to almost touch it. Many great photos were taken of it.

Many of these butterflies were very fresh. One of the Buckeyes kept its wings folded. We at first thought it was a Tropical. But after comparing with pictures of the underwings, it was determined that it was a Common Buckeye.

Alice and Sharon were very enthusiastic on their first count. They commented over and over how glad they were to have come out and joined in on the hunt. They asked many good questions. They helped us remember our past excitement and interest. It also made us realize how far we have come in our knowledge of the flutterbys.