by Carl Strang
Earlier I mentioned that one winner in the winter survival sweepstakes appears to have been the spring azure. Another butterfly that apparently benefits from mild winters is the red admiral, and I have been seeing enough of these already at Mayslake Forest Preserve to regard them as another beneficiary in 2012.
It’s too soon to tell with other butterflies. Last week I got the opportunity to photograph both genders of the wild indigo dusky wing, but they are the only two individuals I have seen to date.
These skippers indeed often hang around Mayslake’s wild indigo plants, but their population reportedly has increased in recent decades as their larval diet has broadened to include other legumes.
It seems I have been counting a few more black swallowtails than usual, as well, but again I need to see more before I will think they had greater than usual survivorship.