Monday, May 28, 2012

Black form Eastern Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly

I saw this rather large black butterfly in the back yard. I believe it is the black form of the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail.


We are having waves of light rain coming in from Tropical Storm Beryl, and I was surprised to see this butterfly.


It caught my eye because it was so big. The yellow Tiger Swallowtails have a wingspan of about 5” and this one was about that size.


It has started raining again…I’ll have to check later when the band of rain clouds pass.

What a nice “welcome home”.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Hoover……………a cute little Chipmunk

I save Babe’s (our Love bird)  seed and give it to the squirrels at home…but while on a trip to NY I spotted this little Chipmunk in the backyard, behind a friend’s garage. We have our camper parked there and each morning I watched him scurry around.

I put a nice heap of seed on a woodpile and watched it work. At first, I thought it was looking for a specific seed…nope…it was filling up it’s pouches, but the action reminded me of a vacuum cleaner….sweeping back and forth over them……therefore….”Hoover”.


You can see the difference in his pouches….


Looks like a bad case of the mumps.


In the pictures above, he is checking to see if the way is clear for him to head to the storage area. He scooted thru the garden and under a cinder block.


Notice how sleek his cheeks look now.


It made several more trips until the pile of seeds was gone.

According to they are omnivorous. They will eat grain, nuts, fruits & berries. Sometimes even birds eggs and small baby mice. Frogs, worms and fungi can also be part of it’s diet.

My Grandmother had several over the years that would come up and take peanuts from her hand.

This one would be easy to tame. The second day I was able stand within 3’ of the seed and it would come up and start filling it’s pouches. I spoke to it each time as I walked to the area, and while I was there so as not to scare it away. By the end of the week it was coming within minutes of hearing my voice.

The only info I could find on Chipmunks in Florida mentioned the panhandle. We’ve never seen any in our area in Central Florida. We live in a hammock and most of the year it is pretty wet….so I will just have to enjoy them here in the North.