Category Archives: CBS

Pilot Mountain/Surry County NABA Count – Aug 24, 2016

8 observers put in several hours on Aug 24 for the Pilot Mountain/Surry County butterfly count. Temps 73-83, mostly cloudy skies. From mountain summit, to feeder creeks, corridor trail and Yadkin river section of the park, more habitat than we had time to cover, lots of nectar, thistle was boomin!

From Lori Carlson: I have a photo album up on Flickr that contains the suspected Cloudeds. The album link is here:

Tentative results below. 52 sp.

8 Pipevine Swallowtail
7 Black Swallowtail
321 E Tiger Swallowtail
12 Spicebush Swallowtail

2 Cabbage White
24 Clouded Sulphur
24 Cloudless sulphur
1 Little Yellow
69 Sleepy Orange

5 Gray Hairstreak
2 Red-banded Hairstreak
35 E tailed blue
26 Summer Azure

1 American Snout
17 Variegated Fritillary
34 Great Spangled Fritillary
520 Silvery Checkerspot
75 Pearl Crescent
2 Question Mark
3 American Lady
4 Red Admiral
21 Common Buckeye
12 Red-spotted Purple
1 Viceroy
1 Tawny Emperor
1 Southern Pearly-eye
1 Creole Pearly-eye
15 Northern Pearly-eye
3 Appalachian Brown (new site that should be reliable!)
8 Gemmed Satyr
1037 Carolina Satyr
1 Common Wood-nymph
7 Monarch

4 Silver-spotted skipper
1 horaces duskywing
1 Common checkered-skipper
9 Common Sootywing (new site)
2 Swarthy Skipper
18 clouded skipper
45 least skipper
2 fiery skipper
3 Pecks skipper
4 Tawny-edged skipper
10 Crossline skipper
1 norhtern broken dash
6 little glassywing
382 sachem
52 deleware skipper
14 zabulon skipper
1 Dun skipper
1 Common Roadside-skipper
1 EUFALA SKIPPER (new site, photographed by most of us!)

Misses include Zebra swallowtail, orange sulphur, eastern comma, painted lady, hackberry emperor, hoary edge, any cloudywing, lace-winged roadside skipper (looked hard in usual spots), southern broken dash and Ocola skipper.

Brian Bockhahn

Pettigrew State Park NABA Count – Aug 28, 2016

Yesterday (August 28), the Pettigrew SP, NC, butterfly count was held, under relatively poor conditions — mostly cloudy and somewhat threatening skies and winds of 10-12 mph. The afternoon was cloudy with a few sprinkles here and there, but winds were still an issue. We had outstanding coverage, with six parties: Jeff Pippen and me; Ed Corey; Salman Abdulali; Signa and Floyd Williams; Nick and Elisa Flanders; and Randy Emmitt and Tom and Barbara Driscoll.

Zebra Swallowtail 49
Black Swallowtail 24
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 98
Spicebush Swallowtail 32
Palamedes Swallowtail 207
Cabbage White 12
Orange Sulphur 77
Cloudless Sulphur 511
Sleepy Orange 1,090
Gray Hairstreak 14
Red-banded Hairstreak 3 low
Eastern Tailed-Blue 4 always scarce on this count, for no obvious reason
Summer Azure 70
Variegated Fritillary 69
Pearl Crescent 138
Question Mark 5
Eastern Comma 1
Red Admiral 24
Common Buckeye 116
Red-spotted Purple 21
Viceroy 37
Southern Pearly-eye 6 good number of pearly-eyes of both species
Creole Pearly-eye 2
pearly-eye sp. 3
Carolina Satyr 9 low; did not attempt to discern if any might be Intricates
Common Wood-Nymph 2
Monarch 6 only seen by one party!
Silver-spotted Skipper 169
Horace’s Duskywing 3
Zarucco Duskywing 1 scarce in the area
Common Checkered-Skipper 22
Common Sootywing 22
Clouded Skipper 2 low
Least Skipper 341 very high, at least relative to other skippers
Fiery Skipper 51
Sachem 1
Dion Skipper 7
Dun Skipper 2 quite low
Twin-spot Skipper 1 at northern edge of range
Ocola Skipper 37

Total: a very disappointing 39 species

Misses: Great Purple Hairstreak; American Lady; a wide variety of grass skippers we often get 1-2 individuals of, such as Whirlabout and Lace-winged Roadside-Skipper; and migrants such as Gulf Fritillary and Painted Lady. Though the first two were the only usual misses, with 5-6 parties and decent conditions, we usually get lots of ones and twos in the skippers and migrants that fill in holes to get to 45 or rarely 50 species.

What were much big bigger issues than the weather were the continued clearing and herbiciding of many ditches and canals in the area, and very sadly the obvious mosquito spraying that took place in much of the count circle, as evidenced by a near lack of most grass skippers and many other insects (including mosquitoes) where nectar sources were abundant. Masses of coastal Joe-pye-weed, ironweed, verbena, climbing hempweed, swamp milkweed, pickerelweed, etc., were devoid of nearly all butterflies and bees/wasps, even including swallowtails. This year has seen an increase in most butterfly populations across North Carolina since the devastating snow, ice, and freezes back in early 2013, but this area has been devastated by spraying. It was difficult to find skippers other than Least and Silver-spotted, but if you go to other areas of the Coastal Plain, this skipper dearth isn’t really a problem.

I want to sincerely thank the efforts of all of the observers, nearly all of whom had to travel 2-3 hours from their homes to reach the count circle, only to be confronted with a lack of skippers. Better butterflying back in your home areas!

Harry LeGrand

Durham NABA Count – Aug 21, 2016


Again this year the annual Durham Butterfly Count produced above average numbers of butterflies making a very successful day! Conducted yesterday (21 Aug 2016), six field parties and one garden watcher cumulatively tallied 5096 individual butterflies comprising 57 species within a 15 mile diameter circle in Durham, NC. While most species showed up in generally average numbers (based on 18 years of conducting this survey), we found near record high numbers for three species (Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, Pearl Crescent, Carolina Satyr), and we set new record highs for four species (Cloudless Sulphur, Sleepy Orange, Silvery Checkerspot, Hackberry Emperor). Skipper numbers overall were around average, and we found no mega-rarities. We rarely see Common Wood-Nymphs in large numbers, but this is the first year we’ve missed them entirely.

The weather was partly cloudy, hot, and humid. A couple of passing showers interrupted a couple of the northern parties for 15 minutes or so, but as soon as the rain dissipated, the sun returned, and the butterflies again took flight. My team actually saw several butterflies flying around in the rain including swallowtails, checkerspots, and satyrs.

Detailed results, links to a few photos, and other information may be found at

Brian Bockhahn’s team tallied the most individuals (1514), and the Krakauer/Pippen team found the greatest species diversity (42). Many thanks to all who helped make this a fun and productive day exploring fields and forests: Brian Bockhahn, Lori Carlson, Will Cook, Tom Driscoll, Randy Emmitt, Laura Hamon, John Jarvis, Tom Krakauer, Kelly Mieszkalski, Kati Moore, Mai Anh Ngo, Byron Perry, Jeffrey Pippen, Richard Stickney, and Derek & Elissa Treuer.

Here’s the species list and grand totals for the day:

Pipevine Swallowtail 11
Zebra Swallowtail 2
Black Swallowtail 9
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 1024
Spicebush Swallowtail 25
Cabbage White 7
Clouded Sulphur 1
Orange Sulphur 9
Cloudless Sulphur 378
Little Yellow 1
Sleepy Orange 592
Juniper Hairstreak 2
Gray Hairstreak 13
Red-banded Hairstreak 3
Eastern Tailed-Blue 125
Summer Azure 29
American Snout 14
Variegated Fritillary 57
Great Spangled Fritillary 5
Silvery Checkerspot 353
Pearl Crescent 512
Question Mark 12
Eastern Comma 10
American Lady 4
Red Admiral 57
Common Buckeye 270
Red-spotted Purple 68
Viceroy 9
Hackberry Emperor 46
Tawny Emperor 36
Northern Pearly-eye 4
Appalachian Brown 3
Gemmed Satyr 7
Carolina Satyr 408
Monarch 18
Silver-spotted Skipper 236
Hoary Edge 2
Southern Cloudywing 2
Horace’s Duskywing 21
Zarucco Duskywing 1
Wild Indigo Duskywing 6
Com. Checkered-Skipper 11
Common Sootywing 1
Swarthy Skipper 33
Clouded Skipper 54
Least Skipper 39
Fiery Skipper 308
Tawny-edged Skipper 2
Crossline Skipper 13
Southern Broken-Dash 15
Little Glassywing 21
Sachem 83
Delaware Skipper 11
Zabulon Skipper 61
Dion Skipper 7
Dun Skipper 13
Ocola Skipper 32

Good Butterflying,


Jeffrey S. Pippen
Durham, NC

Latta Plantation Nature Preserve and Cowans Ford NP – Aug 7, 2016

A great Sunday for a CBS walk at Latta Plantation NP and Cowans Ford NP weather was hot and sunny temps in the upper 80’s for most of the day and the storms stayed away . Thanks to Lenny Lampel , Rob Gilson, Ron Clark and Jennifer Daggy for participating in the count. We ended up with a total of 36 species, here is the List

Latta Plantation Nature Preserve

Pipevine Swallowtail 1
Zebra Swallowtail. 3
Spice bush Swallowtail. 4
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail. 13
Little Yellow. 33 +
Sleepy Orange. 23 +
Cloudless Sulphur. 9
Gray Hairstreak. 1
ETB. 11
Variegated Fritillary 4
Pearl Crescent. 5
Question Mark. 1
Common Buckeye. 6
Red- spotted Purple. 7
Hackberry Emperor. 3
Northern Pearly-eye. 2
Carolina Satyr. 8
Hoary Edge. 6
Silver-spotted Skipper. 1
Northern Cloudywing. 2
Southern Cloudywing. 1
Horace’s Duskywing. 7
Fiery Skipper. 6
Sachem. 8
Little Glassywing. 3
Dun Skipper. 4
Swarthy Skipper. 1
Delaware Skipper. 3
Zebulon Skipper. 19

Cowans Ford Nature Preserve

Pipevine Swallowtail. 1
Spicebush. Swallowtail. 1
Tiger Swallowtail. 5
Little Yellow. 3
Sleepy Orange. 3
Cloudless Sulphur. 3
ETB. 2
Red-banded Hairstreak. 2
Juniper Hairstreak. 1
Variegated Fritillary. 3
Great Spangled Fritillary
SIlvery Checkerspot. 1
Pearl Crescent. 25+
Common Buckeye. 3
Red-spotted Purple. 1
Northern Pearly-eye. 1
Creole Pearly-eye. 3
Carolina Satyr. 35+
Hoary Edge Skipper. 2
Silver-spotted Skipper. 1
Southern Cloudywing. 1
Horace’s Duskywing. 1
Swarthy Skipper. 1
Fiery Skipper. 12
Sachem. 16
Little Glassywing. 3
Dun Skipper 2
Delaware Skipper 2
Zebulon Skipper. 2.
Clouded Skipper. 1
Ocola Skipper. 2


Citrine Forktail
Swamp Darner
Black-shouldered Spineylegs
Calico Pennant
Halloween Pennant
Swift Setwing
Eastern Pondhawk
Little Blue Dragonlet
Slaty Skimmer
Great Blue Skimmer
Widow Skimmer
Common Whitetail
Blue Dasher
Wandering Glider
Carolina Saddlebags
Black Saddlebags

Sent from my iPad

North Buncombe NABA Count – Aug 5, 2016

Almost postponed the date as the weather prediction was mostly cloudy and 60% rain. Well, it did rain on 2 groups, but not on 2. And we had mostly sun all day.
The “copper meadows” did not produce a single copper this year. And meadows at end of Cedar Hill trail had been recently bulldozed. Monarch was another sad miss. As were Crossline and Hayhurst’s Scallopwing. So we were very lucky to end up with 52 species; individual numbers low – 1231. This was our 7th count. Our species numbers have ranged from 51 to 55. Individuals from 937 to 2726.

Participants were Doug Johnston, Simon Thompson, Jamie Harrelson, Nancy Cowal, Sue Perry, Joe Tomcho, Dan and Joanne Lazar, and myself.

Gail Lankford

Pipevine ST – 17
Black ST – 7
E. Tiger ST – 128
Spicebush ST – 25
Cabbage White – 49
Clouded Sulphur – 24
Orange Sulphur – 35
Cloudless Sulphur – 21
Gray HS – 6
Red-banded HS – 1
ETB – 153
Summer Azure – 10
Harvester – 1 (first on count)
Variegated Frit – 29
GS Frit – 14
Meadow Frit – 21
Silvery Checkerspot – 2
Pearl Crescent – 120
Question Mark – 2
Eastern Comma – 3
American Lady – 5
Red Admiral – 3
C. Buckeye – 76
Red spotted Purple – 14
Viceroy – 4
Hackberry Emperor – 1
No. Pearly-eye – 30
Gemmed Satyr – 20
Carolina Satyr – 71
Common Wood-nymph – 9
SSS – 1-9
Hoary-edge – 1
Southern Cloudywing – 4
No. Cloudywing – 1
Horace’s Duskywing – 2
Mottled DW – 2
Zarucco DW – 4
Wild Indigo DW – 24
C. Checkered Skipper – 15
C. Sootywing – 1
Swarthy Skipper – 8
Clouded Skipper – 5
Least Skipper — 1
Fiery Skipper – 25
Peck’s Skipper – 25
Tawny-edged Skipper – 2
Little Glassywing – 1
Sachem – 33
Zabulon Skipper – 48
Dun Skipper – 12
Lace-winged RS Skipper – 6
Ocola Skipper – 1

Yates Mill/Mid-Pines Rd., Wake County, NC – June 4, 2016

The Carolina Butterfly Society sponsored a butterfly walk this morning at Yates Mill County Park, south of Raleigh, and then quickly (quicker than we expected) went over to a nearby NC State U. experimental garden along Mid-Pines Road. There were about 7 of us, but after about 11:20 only 3-4 of us were left, as several had some heat issues. But, Lori Carlson, John Jarvis, and Bud Webster (the trip leader) stuck it out a bit. We did see the hoped-for Broad-winged Skippers nectaring on pickerelweed at Yates Mill, but very little else. The experimental farm area has a field strip planted heavily in common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) and also in butterflyweed (A. tuberosa); this strip is several hundred yards long, and maybe up to 40-50 feet wide. The common milkweed had most of the butterflies. I re-visited wooded areas at Yates Mill after midday and added a few other species. Here is our/my list:

Black Swallowtail 1
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 10 includes at least 2 dark females
Spicebush Swallowtail 2
Cabbage White 60 about 50 were on a planted strip of mustards in bloom
Orange Sulphur 12
Gray Hairstreak 1
Eastern Tailed-Blue 6
Variegated Fritillary 15
Pearl Crescent 4
American Lady 15
Common Buckeye 20
Question Mark 1 at marsh on second boardwalk at Yates
Eastern Comma 1 perched on the display sign at Yates
Creole Pearly-eye 1 along bottomland trail at Yates
Monarch 4 both sexes present at the milkweed strip
Silver-spotted Skipper 3
Common Sootywing 1 fresh; a pleasant surprise, but does occur in the area
Fiery Skipper 12
Sachem 1 female
Zabulon Skipper 2 female; 1 nectaring on pickerelweed with Broad-wingeds
BROAD-WINGED SKIPPER 9 two were even nectaring on the milkweeds; a local colony is at Yates Pond

Harry LeGrand

Also Lori Carlson posted a photo album from this trip on Flokr. Highlights include the Broad-winged Skipper, Monarch, and Common Sootywing.

Cowpens National Battlefield and Blue Wall Preserve, SC – April 16-17, 2016

Doug Allen was our trip leader for both days. In attendance on Saturday Were: Dennis Forsythe, Jeff Kline, Paul Seibert, Sherry Robertson and Dave Kastner. April 16 started at Cowpens National Battlefield followed by a walk to Thicketty Mountain and then a walk at Caroland Farms. April 17 began at Doug’s neighbor’s in Inman, SC followed by a trip to Blue Wall Preserve. In attendance on Sunday were: Jeff Kline and Dave Kastner.

April 16
Cowpens National Battlefield (Cherokee County)

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 15
Spicebush Swallowtail 1
Sleepy Orange 1
Red-banded Hairstreak 8
Spring Azure 1
Azure species 10
Eastern Tailed-Blue 5
Pearl Crescent 8
Variegated Fritillary 2
Carolina/Intricate Satyr 7
Satyr species 1
Silver-spotted Skipper 1
Juvenal’s Duskywing 8
Sachem 1
Skipper species 1

Thicketty Mountain (Cherokee County)

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 6
Spicebush Swallowtail 1
Pipevine Swallowtail 2
Black Swallowtail 1
Falcate Orangetip 2
Red-spotted Purple 1
Northern Cloudywing 2
Hoary Edge 10 (Cherokee County Record)
Silver-spotted Skipper 1
Juvenal’s Duskywing 6
Sleepy Duskywing 12 (Cherokee County Record)
Duskywing species 1
Common Roadside-Skipper 1 (Cherokee County Record)

Caroland Farms (Spartanburg County)

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 2
Spicebush Swallowtail 2
Zebra Swallowtail 2
Swallowtail species 1
Sleepy Orange 1
Juniper Hairstreak 1
American Lady 4
Red Admiral 1
Carolina/Intricate Satyr 3
Juvenal’s Duskywing 2
Skipper species 1

April 17
Doug Allen’s neighbor, open field and roadside (Spartanburg County)

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 14
Clouded or Orange Sulphur 8
Pearl Crescent 2
American Lady 1
Variegated Fritillary 1
Red-spotted Purple 1
Carolina/Intricate Satyr 3
Juvenal’s Duskywing 1

Blue Wall Preserve (Greenville County)

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 73
Spicebush Swallowtail 2
Swallowtail species 4
Orange Sulphur 1
Azure species 3
Eastern Tailed-Blue 1
Eastern Pine Elfin 1
White M Hairstreak 1
Pearl Crescent 8
Carolina/Intricate Satyr 6
Silver-spotted Skipper 10
Juvenal’s Duskywing 7
Dreamy Duskywing 1
Duskywing species 11
Zabulon Skipper 2


CBS Cowpens NB 2016

Photos from the CBS trip to Cowpens National Battlefield and Blue Wall Preserve on April 16-17, 2016

Congaree State Park NABA Count: Calhoun County – Sept 14, 2015

Hi All,

Here are our results from the Congaree Bluffs HP portion of the Congaree NP NABA Count.

Date: 14 Sept. 2015
Loc: Congaree Bluffs Heritage Preserve
Obs: Donna and Dennis Forsythe
Time: 1215-1400 hrs
Effort: 1 mi
E. Tiger Swallowtail 3
Spicebush Swallowtail 1
Zebra Swallowtail 1
Cloudless Sulfur 9
Little Yellow 7
Sleepy Orange 18
Eastern Tailed-Blue 3
Summer Azure 1
American Snout 1
Gulf Fritillary 20
Variegated Fritillary 25
American Lady 2
Red Admiral 1
Common Buckeye 3
Pearl Crescent 3
Red-spotted Purple 15
Hackberry Emperor 2
Carolina/Intricate Satyr 20
SIlver-spotted Skipper 1
Zarucco Duskywing 3
White Checkered-Skipper 4
Clouded Skipper 1
Fiery Skipper 3
Crosslne Skipper 1
Zabulon Skipper 4
Dun Skipper 1


Dennis M. Forsythe PhD
South Carolina Ebird Reviewer
Emeritus Professor of Biology

Congaree State Park NABA Count: Calhoun County East – Sept 14, 2015

Date: 14 Sept. 2015
Loc: Calhoun Co. East
Obs: Donna and Dennis Forsythe
Time: 1115-11215; 1400-1600 hours
Effort: 18 mi
Coverage: Purple Martin Marsh, Wise Rd below Ft. Motte, Lang Syne Rd, Lone Star Rd, St Matthews City Park and vicinity
Weather: 70-82 f, clear, N wind
Roadsides and ditches in agricultural areas clean, no habitat for butterflies, Checkered White probably extirpated from area.
E. Tiger Swallowtail 8 including 1 dark and 1 intermediate female
Spicebush Swallowtail 1
Palamedes Swallowtail 4
Cloudless Sulfur 60
Little Yellow 1
Sleepy Orange 30
Red-banded Hairstreak 2
Gray Hairstreak 2
Eastern tailed-Blue 8
Summer Azure 1
American Snout 2
Gulf Fritillary 25
Variegated Fritillary 20
American Lady 1
Common Buckeye 2
Pearl Crescent 2
Red-spotted Purple 15
Viceroy 1
Monarch 1
Silver-spotted Skipper 3
Long-tailed Skipper 3
Horace’s Duskywing 2
Zarucco Duskywing 8
White Checkered-Skipper 6
Clouded Skipper 1 very worn
Southern Skipperling 2
Fiery Skipper 15
Whirlabout 1
Dun Skipper 1
Ocola Skipper 4

Dennis M. Forsythe PhD
South Carolina Ebird Reviewer
Emeritus Professor of Biology

Pettigrew State Park, NC NABA Count – Sept 5, 2015


Saturday (Sept. 5), nine brave butterfliers defied questionable weather forecasts to count butterflies in the Lake Phelps area in Washington and Tyrrell counties. Though the rain pretty much missed us, and the mostly cloudy skies weren’t much of a factor, the strong NE winds from 12-18 mph made things difficult, especially in the wide open fields north of the lake. It was probably the windiest count we had ever been on.

Thankfully, we split up into 6 parties, so the final tally makes it appear like the count was a great success (45 species is average, and 50 would be a real success.) Though butterfly numbers are up from the past two years, skipper numbers are still low, especially for various wetland species, and some skipper species had presumably already finished their broods by Sept. 5. Thanks to Ed Corey for recruiting folks for the count and helping out; thanks also to Lori Carlson and John Jarvis, to Elisa and Nick Flanders, to Signa and Floyd Williams, and to Salman Abdulali for helping with me. Here are the totals, with a few comments:

Zebra Swallowtail 12
Black Swallowtail 2
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 57
Spicebush Swallowtail 16
Palamedes Swallowtail 148
Cabbage White 6
Orange Sulphur 194 good count
Cloudless Sulphur 360
Little Yellow 1 rare in the region, and first record for Washington County
Sleepy Orange 707
Great Purple Hairstreak 9 good count
Gray Hairstreak 63 good count
Red-banded Hairstreak 17
Eastern Tailed-Blue 2
Summer Azure 27
Gulf Fritillary 1 rare in the region
Variegated Fritillary 14
Pearl Crescent 176
Question Mark 2
American Lady 4
Painted Lady 1 scarce in NC this year
Red Admiral 32
Common Buckeye 134
Red-spotted Purple 22
Viceroy 25
Southern Pearly-eye 9
Creole Pearly-eye 1
Carolina Satyr 17
Common Wood-Nymph 4
Monarch 5
Silver-spotted Skipper 220
Long-tailed Skipper 1 scarce in NC this year
Horace’s Duskywing 4
Common Checkered-Skipper 12
Common Sootywing 7
Clouded Skipper 5
Least Skipper 74
Fiery Skipper 223
Southern Broken-dash 1
Little Glassywing 1 photo documentation for confirmation; scarce in this region
Sachem 9
Zabulon Skipper 1
Dion Skipper 3
Dun Skipper 3
Lace-winged Roadside-Skipper 2
Ocola Skipper 52

Total: 46 species

Harry LeGrand