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Tuesday
Jul242012

Our Nineteenth Annual Butterfly Count 

Common Wood Nymphs lived up to their name during our count. Photo by Roy PilcherRutland County Audubon’s nineteenth Annual Butterfly Count was scheduled for Saturday, July 7, but inclement weather intervened and so the count was rescheduled for the following day, Sunday.  

Good fortune dictated a perfect day, Sunday, for the rescheduled count. Temperatures ranged from 73 to 77 degrees with partly cloudy skies and only a gentle northwest breeze.

The four participants managed to tally 688 individual butterflies covering 40 species over a period of 6 hours.  These numbers are well within the range when compared to the eighteen year average of 653 individual butterflies and 34 species.

The butterfly of the day with the highest aggregate was Common Wood Nymph with 92 individuals tallied.  It certainly lived up to the designation, “common”!


While the count circle was adhered to, only three of the five count sites were consistent with past counts hence comparisons are not strictly valid!

Count tallies were entered into the North American Butterfly Association’s country-wide data bank.

Species’ numbers followed by an asterisk indicate a record high for the local count.

Black Swallowtail 15*, Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 29*, Cabbage White 86, Clouded Sulphur 57, Orange Sulphur 60*, Acadian Hairstreak 5, Banded Hairstreak 15, Eastern Tailed Blue 8,

Silvery Blue 2, Azure complex 1, Great Spangled Fritillary 17, Aphrodite Fritillary 1, Atlantis Fritillary 7, Meadow Fritillary 15, Crescent species [Pearl/Northern] 78, Question Mark 2, Eastern Comma 1, Mourning Cloak 1, Milbert's Tortoiseshell 5, Red Admiral 1, American Lady 3, Painted Lady 2, Viceroy 1, Eyed Brown 4, Little Wood Satyr  2, Common Ringlet 17, Common Wood Nymph 92*, Monarch 67*, Silver-spotted Skipper 33*, Northern Cloudywing 1, Least Skipper 8, European Skipper 30, Peck's Skipper 1, Tawny-edged Skipper 1, Northern Broken Dash 1, Little Glassywing 1, Delaware Skipper 1, Mulberry Wing 1, Hobomok Skipper 1, Dun Skipper 15.

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