Sunday, July 13, 2008

Flying Flowers

Yesterday, I showed you my Butterfly Island. Today, I would like to take you in the mist of the island to see some of the beautiful Butterflies and Hummingbirds or "Flying Flowers" as I like to call them.

I have 2 Hummingbird feeders nestled in the middle of the island for the bird species of the Flying Flowers. I think the tiny Hummingbirds are little flowers themselves with their brilliant colors!
Hummingbirds sip sweet nectar from the butterfly bushes and the feeders we provide. Here in Georgia we have the Ruby-Throated hummer as our guest.

See the males vibrant red throat? Compare his tiny size to the telephone cable he is sitting on!

The female does not have the ruby colored red throat but she is a very colorful little bird just the same.

Such a tiny bird but don't let her size fool you. I saw her chasing an Eastern Phoebe bird many times her size away from the area! Here she stands guard against any intruders! Note that the other day, the male had this area in control.

I am very proud of this next picture. I snapped 165 pictures on Friday just to attempt to capture her in flight! My persistence paid off as I was able to catch her for you to see. Just wish I had a better camera or knew how to work the settings I have on this camera! ha ha...

The shot of the male in flight is not quit as good. The female was chasing him off every time he entered the picture! She was being so rude this day!

Not sure those hummers constitute "Holy Grail" status Gail and Frances. Am I at least close enough for the consolation prize? Giggle...

This Sphinx Moth is often mistaken for a hummingbird since they closely resemble them. I know, not a great clear picture of the Sphinx. I tried my best but this little bugger was too busy and would not slow down for me! I recall someone else snapping a fairly good picture of one and thought it was Dave but I could not find a label to the Sphinx over at The Home Garden. Dave, was it you or am I mistaken?

I have 3 colors of Butterfly bush in the island. Two shades of purple and a white to make up the beauty. It appears that the butterflies prefer the white because most pictures of the butterflies were taken while on the white bushes.

As Frances over at the Faire Garden has mentioned, it is very difficult to capture a fluttering butterfly or bug busy at work! I had to be very patient and snap lots of useless, blurry pictures to capture the photographs I have for you!

*I am not sure I have identified the butterflies correctly as some look a bit differently then they appear in my butterfly book. If you can identify them correctly, please do so for me...

Now sit back and enjoy more Flying Flowers!

Tiger Swallowtail:

Tiger Swallowtail: under side view.

Long-Tailed Skipper: Top View; The colors remind me of the hummers Long-Tailed Skipper:Under side view was not as colorful.
Common Sootywing:
Painted Lady:
Common Checkered Skipper: Silver-spotted Skipper:
Banded Hairstreak:you may have to enlarge the pic to see this one. Pipevine Swallowtail:
Black Swallowtail: Can you tell the difference between these two? Pearl Crescent:
Gulf Fritilliary: Open wing and under wing view.Gulf Fritillary: Under wing view.
Gulf Fritillary: Open Wing view.
Dun Skipper:

Variegated Fritillary:
Yellowpatch Skipper:
Firey Skipper:


Zebra Swallowtail:
Lunar Moth: I know, the Lunar moth is not a butterfly nor is it in the butterfly island. I just wanted you to see it because I think it is beautiful with its day glow color of green. I never realized how many different types of butterflies we had fluttering around in the Butterfly Island until I started snapping pictures. I then had a closer look and was shocked at how many we have. Keep in mind, I only snapped these pictures over two weeks time. We have many more types as they come and go all summer long.

If you do not have butterflies in your garden, then put out the Welcome Mat by planting a Butterfly Bush! I promise, you will not be sorry you did!

My favorite would be the Gulf Fritillary. (I may live in Georgia but I am a Tennessee girl at heart- Go Big Orange!) Which one do you like the best?

I am so happy I created this simple Butterfly Island and I enjoy all the FLYING FLOWERS, In the Garden...


  1. Great butterfly and hummingbird pics. Your Butterfly Island is attracting alot of different types. Thanks for sharing. :) I love the purple Butterfly Bush. I have a white one, but I thought about getting another color.

  2. That is so funny. Right away my favorite was the Gulf Frittillary and now I see yours too! I also like the zebra. 165 pictures? Girl you were working then! Loved the post and I think you did an excellent job on taking the pics with your camera! Good morning all!

  3. Great shots - sooo beautiful! - I know how hard it is to capture pictures of something that is always moving, at least flowers "Sit still" Last year I saw hummingbirds for the first time in my live - I wish they lived here, since I do not think I would ever get tired of seeing them. And I am going to plant a butterfly bush, thanks for reminding me!

  4. Good Morning Perennial Gardener, you sure are up early! Of my three different colors, my favorite is the deep color purple but it does not show up as well from a distance as the white one. Maybe that is why the butterflies seem to be more attracted to it.

    I goofed while planting them. I planted them in the spring before any blooms and thought I was mixing the colors together but once they started to bloom in late spring, I realized I had put the whites together and the purple together. I was a bit upset but nothing I could do as I had already moved them once and feared harming them if I moved them a second time. If only I had labels in my garden. Sniff…

    I cannot tell you how many pictures I snapped trying to capture quality pictures. The number must be around 1000 if not more! Thank goodness for Digital Cameras! Glad you enjoyed them. I had fun documenting them. Each one is so unique.

  5. Well good morning back at cha Tina. I hope Mr. Fixit is still in bed and you are sneaking to the computer! LOL... It was a toss up between the Gulf and Zebra. The zebra has been my favorite until spotting the Gulf a few weeks ago! Love that bright orange in the sunshine! 165 pictures were just trying to catch the hummer! This was not like work though as it was a challenge I gladly took on as it was fun to see up so closely to them. I always knew butterflies were beautiful, but had no idea how much so until taking a closer look. It is very difficult to get them to pose for a picture though!

    Hello glad to see you pop in for a peek at the butterflies! Did you see the hummingbirds in Denmark or elsewhere? I spotted my first hummer about 20 years ago when I lived in Colorado. I put up a feeder and they made regular visits. Back then I thought a hummer was a hummer but in time discovered there are different types. I have no idea what type I saw in CO. You will enjoy a butterfly bush as they are so easy and they put off a show for several months. They like full sun and hot days. Do you have hot days in Denmark? That is one of many places I have not been to visit...

  6. great pictures! Even if you did have to take tons.

  7. Thanks Jilly, I cannot tell you how often I snap the button on the camera but it is safe to say, Daily! LOL...

  8. I am truly impressed by your butterfly photos. It is very difficult to catch hummingbirds and butterflies because they have no time to pose.~~Dee

  9. Those are fantasic pictures! Great job

  10. Great pics Skeeter! you sure are patient and it really shows. I thought the same about the Gulf Fittillary but I found "Nemo" in the Buckeye. To be looking for a fish and a butterfly at once!

  11. Great pics Skeeter. I didn't know any of the names but have seen quite a few here. I like to watch them flit about the garden. I need to plant a Butterfly Bush to help draw more of them to my garden. I had thought about one that has all 3 colors on the same bush. Don't know if they would grow here or not.
    You did a lot of work but it was worth it. Thanks for sharing.

  12. WOW! Sidekick wants to come over to Skeeters house for 8 years now:) These pictures were very enticing to the young maybe biologist to be, hahaha. Hope everyone is having a great day --have company today so must go --see you all later!

  13. Dee, Thanks! They are busy little nectar sippers!

    Thanks Dustin, I missed several other ones as they would not strike a pose for me!

    Dawn, I have never heard of looking for Nemo in the Buckeye! I went back to the picture, and sure enough, there is Nemo!

    Lola, I had no idea what their names were until I purchased a nice little Butterfly book. It has all the popular butterflies so I just looked at pictures and matched them up. It will be interesting to see if my memory holds on to them when seeing them again!

    Anonymous, Did your kiddos see Nemo? Actually, I saw two Nemo's... Sidekick and the other Kiddos would love our yard. It is a wildlife Sanctuary for sure!

    News reported a bear sighting in our county! That is rare and I am sure he will find his way to our yard at some point! I will be ready with my trusty camera! LOL...

    We just returned from the lake. Took the boat out for a spin and some splashing. After the snake episode last weekend, I was a bit leery of the water today! I am such a chicken! LOL…

  14. Nothing wrong with that Skeeter. My stepdau is chicken especially since she found the 4' snake skin in cabinet under her bathroom sink. I can still hear her screaming. lol not funny but is.

  15. Hi Skeeter, what a treat and yes, I would call that holy grail worthy, thanks for the links too! You have done a masterful job with the ID and the photos. I can really appreciate the time and effort that went into this post and am envious of the results. Gulf and zebra are always my faves. We had many zebras at our other house in TN, because we had a woods full of Paw Paws, the caterpillar food for the zebra. We do have the gulfs here because we have passionflower, their larval food. None yet however, I am a little worried, but it is still early and the passionflowers are still small vines. We do have a bronze fennel covered in the black swallowtail caterpillars, so there will be more coming soon. I was in Knoxville this weekend and was out with the camera trying to shoot the hummer, he was so close, but ended in failure yet again. One of these days....

  16. What wonderful pictures. Names don't matter much to me, plus I don't know my butterflies very well anyway. It doesn't stop me from enjoying them anyway. I may have to try to snap some pictures when I can hang around my flowers without feeling guilty since the birds are living in my main garden area anyway. I don't want those poor babies to go hungry for too long.

  17. Lola, if I found a 4' snake skin in my bathroom, I would stop eating and drinking! Then I would have no need for the bathroom! LOL...

    Frances, Ah, so I have achieved Holy Grail Status! Wow, I felt the hummer pictures were satisfactory but not Holy Grail Quality. LOL.. Those little guys do not slow down for long! It was a time consuming project, one that I truly enjoyed. Just would not want to make a living at it though! Persistence pays off so keep at it and you will have your Holy Grail at some point. I am not aware of many food sources for the caterpillars. I really should educate myself. We must have plenty for them to eat around us though because as you can see, we have plenty of adult caterpillars with wings!

    Cinj, Glad you enjoyed the butterflies and hummingbirds. The flutter bugs move around so quickly, it is difficult to identify them. I will remember the large ones but the smaller ones are the challenge since they are so small, you cannot see their markings unless you get really close to them. My zoom lens was a great asset for me on this project. Your baby bluebirds will be out of the house in no time at all. Usually 14-20 days once hatched. But as you, I do not like to disturb them when they are in the house. They reward me with pretty songs once they fledge.

    Hope everyone enjoyed their weekend. Our time was pretty relaxing but still hot and dry down here… Please send rain!

  18. You said Sunday but I was of like a butterfly flitting about and am only now getting around to seeing everyone. This is a great post and I am overwhelmed with the wonderful butterfly and moths you have identified for us! They are incredible. AND I haven't even begun to tell you that my dear you found the Holy Grail Photos...actually you took the photos!

    Thank you for the link and a wonderful read!


  19. What magnificence phots and I sure vote for a Holy Grail Award!!
    Wonderfull job and post.

  20. wow! Beautiful. Trust me on have conquered taking pics with your camera. I thought I saw that swallowtail move, you ae so good.

  21. Your "Flying Flowers" are wonderful. You did a nice job with the camera.

  22. Gail, Believe it or not I had the post all ready and scheduled to send a few days ago then sat at the swing with the camera Friday evening and caught the flying hummingbirds! I had to rush to the computer and do some editing. I could not believe I finally captured one in flight. Such a task... I just wish the lighting had been better for a clearer view. I was leaning on the swing and had the camera balanced on my knee! Dont know why I did not get the tripod out but really did not intend to snap as long as I did. Oh well, worth the time and effort.

    Thanks Jean, I had fun with it and am proud of the results. Time consuming though...

    Eve, I looked at so many butterfly pictures; I too thought they were moving! Can you get Carpel Tunnel in your finger? LOL...

    Hello Cindy and thanks for the kind words! Even though this posting is over, I still have my eyes on the island looking for new butterfly visitors.

  23. Great pics. Good job on being so patient.

  24. I like your paired postings. The butterfly island is wonderful--I have the same colors you do, and the lighter purple is actually a volunteer (I had deep purple and white, so I guess the lighter purple one--the biggest of the bunch--is courtesy of a bird--unless maybe the seed doesn't run true?) Anyway, your photos were fabulous--I've been trying to catch a hummingbird for weeks, but even though they're not afraid of me, they don't seem to like my 3x2 camera. Great pictures.

  25. Sarah, it was a test of patience! Thanks for the compliment...

    Cosmo, A Volunteer plant! How great that must be for you! I really do like the bushes and the activity they bring into the yard. At one point I was standing in the middle of the Island with the camera. The hummers would get right up beside me but I was too close to focus! Can you believe I was TOO CLOSE? I had a bright pink shirt on and they were attracted to me! It was a bit unnerving when the female gave chase to the male with me standing in the middle of things! I just knew any minute I was going to be poked in the eye by one of those long skewers! LOL. I had to settle with sitting on the swing and the zoom lens.

  26. Amazing photos! I've never even seen a Lunar Moth. Those are so cool.

  27. Mr Mcgregor's daughter, Thanks! I believe Tina had a posting on the Lunar a while back but I could not find a label on the sidebar. They are really a pretty shade of lime green! We see them often around here but not so much this year. I wonder if a drought keeps them away? Hummmmm....

  28. Love all your photos. Another great plant for the butterflies is Liatris. Mine have been covered by butterfly, sulphur, and skippers. Just wish I could catch the hummingbirds at it. I also have butterfly bushes and Coneflower that they all like.

  29. Hi Leedra,
    I have Liatris but it is to the back of the garden so I dont get to enjoy the activity as much. The butterfly bushes are in the middle of the yard so I see a lot of activity from them...