Monday, October 30, 2006

Mystery Butterfly

Unfortunately, I wasn't able to attend the second (and final) butterfly photography class for this year at the Tucson Botanical Gardens Butterfly Magic display. I hope to get a shoot in some time soon while they still have Asian butterflies on display, but I won't be able to take in a tripod or monopod when the exhibit is open to the general public.

I took these photos in the first class session. I don't know what this butterfly is. (Any help with identification will be gratefully received.)Normally, I don't like to show butterflies on feeders, but this one captivated me with its long proboscis savouring a piece of orange.The proboscis is a tubular sucking organ that enables a butterfly to extract nectar. When not being used, the proboscis is rolled up out of the way.

6 comments:

T. Beth said...

Tropical butterflies will come to fruit feeders. Tourist lodges in Costa Rica have fruit feeders to attract Blue Morpho butterflies. Your butterfly doesn't have any eyespots, so it doesn't look like the Blue Morphos I saw, but maybe it's some sort of other, similar tropical butterfly?

Anonymous said...

The butterfly photography class sounds like a brilliant idea.

Melbourne Zoo has a butterfly house that's populated by native species from the tropics, including the stunning Ulysses (which is black and iridescent blue, a bit like the Morphos) and the Cairns birdwing (black, green and yellow).

You've inspired me to make a visit!

robin andrea said...

Lovely photograph. I find it very difficult to identify butterflies and moths. So many of them look a like, and have few distinguishing features. I wish you good luck with it.

Pam in Tucson said...

t.beth - I'm sure it's not a Blue Morpho. I found one like it while googling, but the person didn't identify it. When I go back to TBG, I'll see if someone will ID it for me. They don't put out a comprehensive catalogue, unfortunately.

snail - Butterfly Magic is in its 3rd year. They open it in October and it closes in March. The rest of the year it's too hot here. How wonderful to have one year-round in Melbourne. Hope you have fun there; don't forget to show us some photos.

ra - Thanks. I was laughing when I took these photos. The butterfly was so still, concentrating on his bounty, and I found it quite charming.

Cynthia E. Bagley said...

Hi.. beautiful pic. Such delicate lines in the wings...

Pam in Tucson said...

Thanks, Cynthia. And congrats. on finishing your first novel!!