Monday, February 2, 2015

A Beautiful Visitor

 The other day I was visiting on the phone with a friend and wandering through the house as I am prone to do and while doing that was startled to see a beautiful butterfly on our stairway wall.

  What in the world was a butterfly doing here in the middle of the winter?!
Mara supposed that it had built its chrysalis in the fall and was planning on over wintering here as Compton Tortoiseshells (that is it's name - we figured that out after looking in our butterfly book) tend to do. It must have made it in some window frame or on some board or something during our building process and then when it ended up inside in the warmer weather it came out of the chrysalis as soon as it was fully formed. That is our supposition. It won't tell us whether it is correct or not.
 Isn't it a pretty butterfly? When folded up I can see how it could so easily blend in to a tree.

 We feel very privileged to be able to see it so up close and personal. In our learning more about this type of butterfly we went on a site made by someone who photographs butterflies and writes about them and his only picture of a Compton tortoiseshell was one from quite a distance. I guess they tend to be very skittish.

 Mara tried getting sugar water for it to eat put it doesn't seem interested. I guess they like tree sap (willow was a particular one they liked) and rotten fruit and we just don't have any of those things on hand. I am afraid that it isn't going to make it. We have enjoyed it's visit however and if it doesn't survive we plan on giving it a nice resting place in a frame somewhere. But Mara doesn't really think it is nice to talk about that as long as it is still alive. :-)

Have you seen any butterflies recently?


Nola said...

That is really neat. I don't think butterflies would like it here right now. It was -45 F with the windchill the other day (-36 F without) and today was somewhat warmer but not much. :)

Martha said...

We had a moth lay some eggs and die on our window when we lived on Rhine Rd. She was in a frame until this winter a bug ate her.
Your butterfly is a beautiful guest.

Abbi said...

Nola, We have been having chilly weather too (under zero) but not quite that cold. Stay warm!

Martha, Did you see the eggs? That would have been interesting too. Our butterfly seems to be ready for her frame now. She hasn't moved the last couple of days.


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