I went to Medora Prairie yesterday, which is a TNC preserve located east of New Virginia, Iowa. This area is home to some of Iowa’s rarest butterflies. While I did not see any of the rare ones, I did get to see some nice ones. We have had a little bit of a spell where there weren’t many butterflies flying, but the numbers are rapidly picking up.
This silvery checkerspot was hanging out near a puddle in the dirt road just alongside the prairie.
This tawny-edged skipper was getting nectar from the dogbane alongside the same road. Dogbane is starting to bloom at Medora, but it is not yet blooming where I live, which is about an hour’s drive to the north of there.
Back home today I came across this Peck’s skipper.
Two days ago I started seeing small whitish butterflies flying high up in the trees. I was pretty sure they were summer azures, but I only saw them a few times and I never got a good look. Now they are out in full force, and can’t be missed. I am sure they number in the dozens, if not the hundreds, just in our yard.
In the road alongside our property I came across these western fox snakes, in a fairly aggressive courtship display.
I considered moving them out of the road because of the possibility that someone could accidentally (or intentionally) run over them with a vehicle. I did not–the road is fairly lightly traveled. When I went past the site about an hour later they were gone. They avoided the road hazard for the time being.
Another pleasant summer day.