Swaying on a stem

Finding a butterfly is many cases a chance encounter – they fly here and there, and if you’re lucky, you’ll bump into one. That’s the way it is with many big, far-ranging butterflies such as monarchs, tiger swallowtails, and painted ladies. Other butterflies are homebodies and tend to stay in the same area, such as viceroys:

img_6333viceroyss.jpg

Once I found this one, I could come back on different days and watch it fly around, out of sight and then back again, often landing on the same perch. Viceroys like to perch overlooking a trail or open space so they can look out for potential mates. This perch was a pretty unusual one, a foxtail. A shrub or branch is what you often find them on. The foxtail made for some interesting compositions, like this vertical looking up the length of the stem.

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