Friday, June 28, 2013

Week 26

28 Jun 2013, Lake Apopka bike trail

As soon as the bike trail from Magnolia Park turns into the Lake Apopka North Shore Restoration Area, there is a rookery where I saw Anhinga chicks in nest and young Little Blue Herons. 

Once again, I saw Northern Bobwhite on the bike trail.  This area next to the lake has canals, marshes and other wet areas and is not your typical Bobwhite habitat but they seem to be here regularly.

It soon became clear it was going to be a dragonfly and butterfly day as they were numerous along the entire bikeway.  This Pearl Crescent greeted me soon after entering the bike trail.
The topside wings of this White Peacock species is attractive but with some species, it helps to get an image of the underside also for ID purposes.  In some cases, you don't have a choice if they happen to be folding their wings up at the time.
At first, this butterfly was upside down and only showing its underwings and I could not tell what it was.  Once it repositioned itself, I saw those discal bars and recognized it as a Tawny Emperor. 
There were numerous Zebra Longwings along the trail and I observed Viceroy, Gulf Fritillary and others.
After a slow start to the year in this location for dragonflies, they were out in force today along the bikeway, including this Two-striped Forceptail male.  Blue Dashers, Eastern Pondhawk and Four-spotted Pennants were abundant, along with Wandering Gliders, Carolina Saddlebags et al.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Week 25

19 Jun 2013 Central Winds Park

Soon after arriving at Central Winds Park, it was clear it was going to be a dragonfly day.  A majestic sub-adult Bald Eagle flew overhead, but it was around the pond where the action was with dragonflies.


This male and female Eastern Amberwing are just starting to come out of their "copulation wheel".  "Doing it" in-flight--pretty cool, wouldn't you say?  Close by, a female Roseate Skimmer was dropping eggs in the water.

After copulating, the male is taking a breather.  This species is tiny at slightly under one inch in length on average.

Also taking a rest was this male Four-spotted Pennant, until ...

until he got buzzed by this male Roseate Skimmer who wanted this perch, and eventually got it.  They loved chasing each other over the pond.

The Four-spotted Pennant reclaimed the perch taken over by the Roseate Skimmer who decided to just take a rest a bit lower on the twig.  Soon, it was joined by a second male Roseate Skimmer.

This male Common Green Darner was at Orlando Wetlands Park on this past Saturday.  Karen Hamblett, Pam Meharg and I biked the Wetlands and after a rain, I headed home but the ladies stuck around and were rewarded with a sighting of a Snail Kite.  Since I did not do a "Week 24" blog entry and today's blog was all about dragonflies, I wanted to put this guy in.