Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Spanish Needle and Butterflies

Spanish Needle plants are considered weeds around here. They are everywhere. I planted one in the yard and now they are spreading. They get very tall ( up to 5’) and leggy. The flowers remind me of tiny daisies.

I had several Zebra Longwings spending time on the Spanish Needle and Lantana.


I spotted at least 6 flitting around the plants. Then a Tiger Swallowtail came in.


They have at least a 5” wingspan. I saw another large Swallowtail and think it may be a female Tiger Swallowtail. I’m not sure….but it is so much larger than the other Swallowtails.


It wasn’t long before the Queens and the Monarchs were visiting the Spanish Needle.


The Queens are really very pretty. This one is a male.


The light on this one gives it a rich velvety look.


This female  is on Tropical Milkweed.


This grasshopper spent a lot of time on the milkweed.


We thought this Hawk was watching a squirrel on it’s feeder…..it looks like it’s wearing a mask…but it’s just shadows.


A squirrel came down the tree and scared it away.  Kind of surprised us.

So far, since we got back from our trip….I’ve released 15 Queens and 8 Monarchs. The Chrysalis on the far R is a Queen. It has a pinkish color to it. The very green one just above the Queen on the R has just pupated and shaped up. It will look more like the others tomorrow.


I’ve been digging up milkweed and planting stalks. When they get through eating that is about all that’s left.


  1. Your butterfly sightings are awesome. They generally move to fast for me to capture an image.

  2. The Spanish Needle is like a magnet attracting the butterflies like that.
    Love the shot of the hawk. Such an intense stare.

  3. Beautiful series of butterfly photos!

  4. I find these butterflies at the top of my list lately. Can you tell me how to get started with them. I want to learn about them...any help would be very appreciative....thanks YOu can email me.


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