Trip Reports – 2013

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Haywood County, April 20 and 21, 2013


The CBS trip April 20 and 21 had clear skies all day Saturday and Sunday afternoon, but windy and cold until about 2:00 each day. But even when warmer, there were very few butterflies. We had only 13 species on Saturday and 10 on Sunday! Scenery and great group of folks were the positives, along with a few Elk sightings on Sunday, about 40 birds, and 50 wildflowers. Gail Lankford

Harmon Den/Max Patch

E. Tiger and Pipevine ST
W. Va. White
Clouded Sulphur
Orange Sulphur
Silvery Blue – 3
Pearl Crescent
Dreamy, Sleepy, Juvenal’s, Wild Indigo DW

Cataloochee Valley

Spring and Summer Azures
E. Tiger and Pipevine ST
W. Va. White
Clouded Sulphur
Orange Sulphur
White M Hairstreak
Dreamy, Sleepy, and Juvenal’s DW

Cypress Gardens Butterfly Walk, April 24, 2013


On April 24, 2013 from 1:30 PM to 3:45 PM 6 observers counted butterflies at Cypress Gardens near Moncks Corner in Berkeley County, South Carolina. Temperature was 76, partly cloudy. Butterflies observed were:

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail   3
Palamedes Swallowtail   30
Cloudless Sulphur   10
Red-banded Hairstreak   1
Lady sp.   1
Pearl Crescent   2
Carolina Satyr   11
Little Wood Satyr   26
Satyr spp.   10
Fiery Skipper   1
Least Skipper   1
Silver-spotted Skipper   8

Dwight Williams
McClellanville, SC

Francis Marion NF, April 27, 2013


We had the following from 0900-1200 hrs in the Francis MArion NF , Berkeley Co., SC mainly along Hoover and Yellowjacket Rds.

E. Tiger Swallowtail
Spicebush Swallowtail
Palamedes Swallowtail
Red-banded Hairstreak
Pearl Crescent
Southern Pearly-Eye
Carolina Satyr
Little Wood Satyr
Silver-spotted Skipper
Southern Cloudwing
Northern Cloudywing
Southern Broken-Bash
Reverse Roadside-Skipper


Dennis M. Forsythe PhD
Emeritus Professor of Biology

Francis Marion NF, April 28, 2013


We I had 5 people today for a butterfly walk at the Francis Marion NF from 9-12. We covered Hoover and Yellowjacket roads.

We had:

E. Tiger Swallowtail   6
Palamedes Swallowtail   10
Red Admiral   1
Pear Crescent   8
Red-spotted Purple   1
Southern Pearly-Eye   1   seen before group arrived
Gemmed Satyr   1
Carolina Satyr   5
Little Wood Satyr   12
Northern Cloudywing   1
Zarucco Duskywing
Clouded Skipper   1
Zabulon Skipper   1
Dun Skipper   1 male
Reversed Roadside-Skipper   2


Also 1 Pinewoods Treefrog., Prairie Warbler, Wild Turkey-female

Dennis M. Forsythe PhD
Emeritus Professor of Biology

Cypress Gardens, May 31, 2013


Six observers covered an approximately 2 mile route through Cypress Gardens (near Moncks Corner, SC) from 1:30–3:30 PM, It was clear and sunny , temp. mid-80s. There were many dragonflies. Butterflies observed were:

Palamedes Swallowtail   2
Southern Oak Hairstreak   1   (new record for the Gardens)
Gray Hairstreak   1
Red-spotted Purple   1
Hackberry Emperor   1
Unidentified Satyr   2   (1 being carried off by a dragonfly)
Silver-spotted Skipper   2
Checkered Skipper sp.   1
Whirlabout (f)   1



Viceroy on willow Sp. 3rd instar
American Lady on Gnaphalium sp. 2nd instar

Dwight Williams
McClellanville, SC

Congaree Bluffs Heritage Reserve Results, June 15, 2013


Calhoun Co. East Results
Obs: Dennis and Donna Forsythe
Part of Congaree NP NABA Count
Time: 10:15-1100, 12:15-1615 hrs
Covered: Purple Martin Marsh, Lang Syne and Adams Rd, Lone Star Rd, St. Matthews
80 f, scattered clouds, mod wind
Species List:
E. Tiger Swallowtail   5   including 2 dark form females
Checkered White   5
Cabbage White   4
Orange Sulfur   1
Cloudless Sulfur   6
Sleepy Orange   15
Gray Hairstreak   2
American Snout   8
Variegated Fritillary   25
American Lady   6
Common Buckeye   30
Red-spotted Purple   1
Horace’s Duskywing   1
White Checkered-Skipper   18
Fiery Skipper   6
Sachem   2

Obs: Donna and Dennis Forsythe
Time: 1100-1215 hrs
Part of Congaree NP NABA Count
Walked to observation platform and down to river
82 f, scattered clouds , mod. wind
Species list:

E. Tiger Swallowtail   1
Zebra Swallowtail   7
American Snout   20
Variegated Fritillary   9
American Lady   1
Common Buckeye   10
Northern Cloudywing   2
White Checkered-Skipper   6

Dennis M. Forsythe PhD
Emeritus Professor of Biology
The Citadel

Tanglewood Butterfly Walk, June 21, 2013


14 of us spent from about 10:00 AM to noon on the BMX trail to the recently replanted meadows near the Yadkin River. It started slowly and overcast but gradually the skies cleared somewhat. While fighting off the June butterfly “doldrums”, we almost managed as many species as participants!

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail   8
Orange Sulphur   2
Eastern Tailed-blue   5
Pearl Crescent   1
Cabbage White   1
Cloudless Sulphur   1
Variegated Fritillary   1
Tawny Emperor   1
Azure sp,   1
Eastern Comma   1 (fresh)
Dun Skipper   1
Silver Spotted Skipper
Common Sootywing   1

Gene Schepker

Forsyth County NABA Count, July 20, 2013


On Saturday, 20 July, 14 of us dodged early overcast conditions and 3:30 thunderstorm to complete a much larger than expected count (considering being held in the late July). Over-all we had 40 species with 370 butterflies with no outstanding or unusual species except for an early arriving Painted Lady (Vanessa Cardui) and my favorite, the Tawny Emperor which has been scarce this year. There was a large outburst of Eastern Tiger Swallowtails (112), Silvery Checkerspots (53), Silver-spotted Skippers (47), and Sachem (29).

I would like to thank all the participants: Nita Colvin, Carl Ganser, Carol Gearhart, David Heavner, Marilyn McDonald (participant and compiler), Tom McKay, Jim Nottke, Max Nottke, Holly Redman, Lois Schneider, Shirley McCabe. Stan Gilliam, and Barbara Cullen. Marilyn did most of the heavy lifting on the compilations and we sent off the count to NABA yesterday.

Gene Schepker

Buncombe County NABA Count, August 4, 2013


Our annual NABA count, organized by Gail Lankford, was held this past Sunday. Weather was pretty good with Temps in the 80’s, mostly sunny with no rain. There was a breeze out of the north which was fine with the counters and didn’t seem to affect the leps.

Most of the count circle is in Buncombe county, but there is a small part that strays into Madison. The Madison numbers are given in brackets and included in the total. Most of the count effort was in the Sandy Mush Game lands which once again has proved to be a great area for wildlife.

12 people participated in this count. Many thanks to all concerned.

54 species and 2006 individuals were counted. I have a spreadsheet comparing this year to the previous three and can send this to anyone interested.

Doug Johnston

Pipevine ST – 128 (45)
Black ST – 7 (1)
E tiger ST – 472 (150)
Spicebush ST – 97 (60)
Cabbage white – 27 (6)
Clouded sulphur – 14
Orange sulphur – 18 (2)
Cloudless sulphur – 117
American copper – 15
Juniper hairstreak – 3 (2)
Gray hairstreak – 4 (1)
Red banded hairstreak – 2
ETB – 74 (19)
Summer azure – 18 (2)
American snout – 3 (1)
Variegated fritillary – 12
Great spangled fritillary – 3 (1)
Meadow fritillary – 2
Silvery checkerspot – 22 (2)
Pearl crescent – 196 (53)
Question mark – 4
E comma – 6 (2)
American lady – 3
Red admiral – 7 (2)
Common buckeye – 6
Red spotted purple – 16 (1)
Viceroy – 2
Hackberry emperor – 4 (3)
N pearlyeye – 8 (2)
Gemmed satyr – 3
Carolina satyr – 267 (63)
Common wood nymph – 10 (2)
Monarch – 7
SIlver spotted skipper – 288 (120)
Hoary edge – 5 (3)
Southern cloudy wing – 9 (2)
Hayhursts scallopwing – 13 (1)
Horace’s duskywing – 1
Mottled duskywing – 4
Wild indigo duskywing – 5
C checkered skipper – 4
C sootywing – 10 (1)
Swarthy skipper – 9 (7)
Clouded skipper – 16 (7)
Least skipper – 39 (6)
Fiery skipper – 3
Pecks skipper – 8 (1)
Crossline skipper – 1 (1)
Sachem – 61 (8)
Delaware skipper – 1
Zabulon skipper – 44 (33)
Dun skipper – 4 (2)
Lace winged roadside skipper – 2 (2)
Common roadside skipper – 2

Doug Johnston

Southern Lake Norman Butterfly Count, August 11, 2013


The Southern Lake Norman Count was held Sunday August 11. Nineteen counters in eight parties verified 56 species within the Count Circle. Here are the species numbers from that hot, humid day (71 F to 91 F).

Zebra Swallowtail   5
Black Swallowtail   15
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail   126
Spicebush Swallowtail   8
Cabbage White   8
Clouded Sulfur   6
Orange Sulfur   56
Cloudless Sulfur   40
Little Yellow   1
Sleepy Orange   15
Gray Hairstreak   1v
Eastern Tailed-blue   69
Azure sp   5
Am. Snout   19
Gulf Fritillary   4
Variegated Fritillary   37
Great Spangled Fritillary   1
Pearl Crescent   50
Question Mark   9
Eastern Comma   3
Am. Lady   7
Red Admiral   2
Com. Buckeye   113
Red-spotted Purple   35
Viceroy   13
Hackberry Emperor   14
Tawny Emperor   14
N. Pearly-eye   7
Creole Pearly-eye   4
Appalachian Brown   1
Gemmed Satyr   1
Carolina Sa. 324
Com. Wood-Nymph   4
Monarch   3
Silver-spotted Skipper   154
Hoary Edge   11
S. Cloudywing   7
N. Cloudywing   2
Horace’s Duskywing   3
Com. Checkered-Sk.   6
Com. Sootywing   1
Swarthy Sk.   5
Clouded Sk.   4
Least Sk.   50
S. Skipperling   16
Fiery Sk.   211
Crossline Sk.   12
S. Broken-Dash   4
N. Broken-Da.   1
Little Glassywing   7
Sachem   132
Delaware Sk.   13
Zabulon Sk.   16
Dun Sk.   16
Eufala Sk.   5
Ocola Sk.   23

Taylor Piephoff
Charlotte, NC

Durham Butterfly NABA Count, August 18, 2013



Overnight rain and cloudy conditions made for a slow start to the 2013 Durham Count. However, seventeen intrepid butterfliers were undaunted and cumulatively found 4609 individual butterflies comprising 56 species, right around the 13 year average for this Count. Will Cook’s party found the best butterfly highlight of the day — a White M Hairstreak that posed for photos. This was only the 5th ever recorded for the Count. Another highlight included a Eufala Skipper, recorded on fewer than half of the counts and found by Tom Krakauer’s party. THe Harry LeGrand party won honors for the most species tallied (43), while Jeff Pippen’s party found the most individuals (1154), mostly because of all the skippers in the Duke Gardens!

You’ll notice a few new count records in the list below.

Many thanks to all who traveled near and far and helped with the Count this year:
Will Cook, John Mathew, Tracy Feldman, Yu-hsuan Liu, Fay-wei Li, Randy Emmitt, Owen McConnel, Tom Krakauer, Gene Schepker, Carl Ganser, Jim Nottke, Sven Halling, Harry LeGrand, Jeffrey Pippen, Max Nottke, and Richard Stickney.

Here are the results:

Pipevine Swallowtail,   3
Zebra Swallowtail,   2
Black Swallowtail,   26
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail,   982 (high, but nowhere near the record)
Spicebush Swallowtail,   126 (record high!)
Cabbage White,   7
Orange Sulphur,   43 (record high!)
Cloudless Sulphur,   213
Sleepy Orange,   125
Juniper Hairstreak,   1
White M Hairstreak,   1
Gray Hairstreak,   26
Red-banded Hairstreak,   2
Eastern Tailed-Blue,   206
Summer Azure,   91
American Snout,   12
Variegated Fritillary,   156
Great Spangled Fritillary,   4
Silvery Checkerspot,   16
Pearl Crescent,   226
Question Mark,   43
Eastern Comma,   3
American Lady,   9
Red Admiral,   13
Common Buckeye,   131
Red-spotted Purple,   105
Viceroy,   26
Hackberry Emperor,   33
Tawny Emperor,   52
Northern Pearly-Eye,   42 (record high!)
Appalachian Brown,   4
Gemmed Satyr,   6
Carolina Satyr,   552 (record high!)
Common Wood-Nymph,   9
Monarch,   2 (all time record low)
Silver-spotted Skipper,   493 (record high!)
Hoary Edge,   6
Southern Cloudywing,   4
Northern Cloudywing,   1
Horace’s Duskywing,   18
Wild Indigo Duskywing,   4
Common Checkered-Skipper,   7
Swarthy Skipper,   51
Clouded Skipper,   33
Least Skipper,   102 (record high!)
Fiery Skipper,   160
Crossline Skipper,   21
Southern Broken-Dash,   50
Northern Broken-Dash,   3
Little Glassywing,   71
Sachem,   116
Delaware Skipper,   4
Zabulon Skipper,   117
Dun Skipper,   32
Eufala Skipper,   1
Ocola Skipper,   12

Good Butterflying!

Jeffrey S. Pippen
Durham, NC

Rockingham County NABA Count, August 22, 2013


The third ever Rockingham County butterfly count was held on 8/22/13 with clear skies and temperatures ranging from 75-87 degrees. Thirteen observers in three parties tallied a whopping 54 species and 3343 butterflies. Three butterflies topped over 200 individuals: Eastern Tiger Swallowtail 1101, Carolina Satyr 582 and Silver-spotted skipper with 271.

One species was new to the park area: Appalachian Brown along the Mayo River.

Misses were same as last year: Little Yellow, Red-banded Hairstreak, Painted Lady, Red Admiral and Common Sootywing.

Many thanks to the counters!

6 Pipevine Swallowtail
3 Zebra Swallowtail
17 Black Swallowtail
1101 Eastern Tiger Swallowtail
52 Spicebush Swallowtail
3 Cabbage White
7 Clouded Sulphur
37 Orange Sulphur
26 Cloudless Sulphur
3 Sleepy Orange
1 Harvester
3 Gray Hairstreak
46 Eastern Tailed-blue
67 Summer Azure
9 American Snout
98 Variegated Fritillary
54 Great Spangled Fritillary
124 Silvery Checkerspot
84 Pearl Crescent
21 Question Mark
6 Eastern Comma
3 American Lady
78 Common Buckeye
98 Red-spotted Purple
8 Viceroy
12 Hackberry Emperor
12 Tawny Emperor
60 Northern Pearly-eye
2 Appalachian Brown
3 Gemmed Satyr
582 Carolina Satyr
2 Common Wood-nymph
16 Monarch
271 Silver-spotted Skipper
11 Hoary Edge
16 Southern Cloudywing
1 Horace’s Duskywing
1 Wild Indigo Duskywing
1 Common Checkered-skipper
4 Swarthy Skipper
6 Clouded Skipper
35 Least Skipper
21 Fiery Skipper
3 Tawny-edged Skipper
18 Crossline Skipper
28 Southern Broken-dash
5 Northern Broken-dash
28 Little Glassywing
112 Sachem
56 Deleware Skipper
67 Zabulon Skipper
9 Dun Skipper
3 Ocola Skipper
3 Peck’s Skipper

Brian Bockhahn

Transylvania NABA Count, August 25, 2013


Yesterday, Sunday, August 25, 2013, 5 of us participated in the Transylvania NABA Count. We had beautiful weather – 68 -79 degrees, mostly sunshine. We were just happy to be out enjoying the nice day. The constant rain must have had a significant impact on the butterfly population in Transylvania County. Here are the results:

Pipevine Swallowtail – 36
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail – 65
Spicebush Swallowtail – 2
Cloudless Sulphur – 2
Eastern tailed Blue – 5
Summer Azure (or whatever they are at this time of year!) – 22
Diana Fritillary (female) – 1
Great Spangled Fritillary – 1
Pearl Crescent – -3
Common Buckeye – 1
Red-spotted Purple – 22
Viceroy – 1
Northern Pearly-eye – 1
Common Wood Nymph – 1
Silver-spotted Skipper – 58
Wild Indigo Duskywing – 1
Fiery Skipper – 1
Sachem – 1
Zabulon Skipper – 3
Lace-winged Roadside Skipper – 3

I would like to thank Michelle Barg (birder turned lep enthusiast!), Nancy Cowal, Janie Owen, and Sue Perry for showing up to help count and just enjoy the beautiful day in the Pisgah National Forest with me. I’m sure we could have improved our numbers with a few more observers but we decided to strike while the iron was hot, so to speak, and take advantage of the a nice day to count. Who knows if the weather will stay this way for long.

Ruth Young, compiler

Carolina Sandhills National Wildlife Refuge, August 25, 2013


We couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day. It was sunny with highs in the low 80’s and very low humidity. There were gusts of wind at times. Dennis Forsythe was our trip leader. In attendance were Carl Ganser, Charlie Cameron, Gene Schepker, Lois Schneider, Bobbie McCutchen, Irvin Pitts and Dave and Marty Kastner. We began around 10:00 and butterflied until around 4:00. Dennis and Bobbie had to leave around 2:30 and missed seeing the Helicta Satyrs that Dennis thought were in the area we covered. He said that we were only the second group of people to have seen them in South Carolina since the 1990’s! What a great sighting!

Palamedes Swallowtail   21
Spicebush Swallowtail   6
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail   19
Black Swallowtail   1
Orange Sulphur   1
Cloudless Sulphur   28
Sleepy Orange   53 (Carl saw a group of 30 on his own)
Southern Dogface   4 (lifer for some of us)
Eastern Tailed-blue   43
Azure sp.   1 (Carl)
Pearl Crescent   1
Common Buckeye   129+ (Dennis described them as “Wall to wall”)
American Lady   4
Variegated Fritillary   24
Gulf Fritillary   1
Red-spotted Purple   7
Horace’s Duskywing   1
Zarucco Duskywing   4
Southern Cloudywing   3
Helicta Satyr   ~20 (lifer for the 6 of us who saw it!)
Carolina Satyr   4
Southern Skipperling   2
Fiery Skipper   2
Whirlabout   2
Dotted Skipper   7 (lifer for all except Dennis)
Clouded Skipper   2
Southern Broken-Dash   2
Dun Skipper   1
Sachem   2
Byssus   1
Swallowtail sp.   1
Sulphur sp.   1
Duskywing sp.   16
Duskywing or Cloudywing sp.   2

Marty & Dave Kastner
Blythewood, SC
Richland County

Wake County Butterfly Count, August 27, 2013


From John Connors (compiler):

August 27, 2013
Clear- Partly Cloudy, 65-90 F
7 Observers in 4 parties
Total Species: 52; Total Individuals: 1140

Species List:

Pipevine Swallowtail- 10
Black Swallowtail-12
E Tiger Swallowtail- 83
Spicebush Swallowtail- 11
Cabbage White- 9
Orange Sulphur- 13
Cloudless Sulphur- 34
Sleepy Orange- 33
Harvester- 1
Gray Hairstreak- 4
Red-banded Hairstreak- 7
E Tailed-Blue- 26
Summer Azure- 27
American Snout- 4
Gulf Fritillary- 3
Variegated Fritillary-30
Silvery Checkerspot-18
Pearl Crescent-40
Question Mark- 3
Eastern Comma-4
American Lady- 3
Common Buckeye- 43
Red-spotted Purple- 7
Viceroy- 5
Hackberry Emperor-4
No. Pearly-eye- 4
Creole Pearly-eye– 2
Gemmed Satyr- 2
Carolina Satyr- 209
C Wood-Nymph- 7
Monarch- 14
Silver-spotted Skipper- 90
Hoary Edge- 1
Horace’s Duskywing- 14
Wild Indigo Duskywing- 1
Common Checkered-Skipper- 9
Common Sootywing- 5
Swarthy Skipper- 2
Clouded Skipper-21
Least Skipper- 29
Fiery Skipper- 93
Crossline Skipper- 3
So. Broken-Dash- 3
Little Glassywing- 16
Sachem- 94
Byssus Skipper- 1* new for count
Zabulon Skipper- 61
Broad-winged Skipper- 1
Dion Skipper- 1
Dun Skipper- 17
Lace-winged Roadside Skipper- 2
Ocala Skipper- 4

Observers: J Connors, N Flanders, J Gerwin, C Goforth, T Howard, K Kittelberger (saw Harvester at home), H LeGrand

Iredell County Count, August 28, 2013



Yesterday six of us* carried out the postponed Iredell County Count. Under skies that varied from mostly cloudy to mostly sunny and temps ranging from 72 to 86, we did roadsides, Allison Woods, and the Iredell Greenway. Our moods improved after lunch when we visited sunny open spots and the butterflies started hopping.

We found 747 adult butterflies of 42 species.

An uncommon find were two Checkered Whites, reported only once before in Iredell County in 2005 at about the same location we observed ours.

Also photographed a 1.5 inch Eastern Fence Lizard (Sceloporus undulatus) and a 4 inch Ringneck Snake (Diadophis punctatus).

Jim Nottke

60   Tiger Swallowtail also 1 5th instar cat
1    Spicebush Swallowtail
2    Checkered White
9    Cabbage White
4    Orange Sulphur
19   Cloudless Sulphur
12   Sleepy Orange
6    Gray Hairstreak
39   ETB
26   Azure
5    American Snout
8    Variegated Fritillary
3    Great Spangled Fritillary
9    Silvery Checkerspot
12   Pearl Crescent
4    Questionmark
1    Red Admiral
49   Common Buckeye
17   Red-spotted Purple
3    Hackberry Emperor
1    Tawny Emperor
5    Northern Pearly-Eye
6    Creole Pearly-Eye
2    Gemmed Satyr
335  Carolina Satyr
3    Silver-spotted Skipper
2    Horaces Duskywing
2    Common Sootywing
3    Clouded Skipper
14   Least Skipper
2    Fiery Skipper
2    Crossline Skipper
3    Southern Broken-Dash
1    Northern Broken-Dash
2    Little Glassywing
48   Sachem
1    Delaware Skipper
19   Zabulon Skipper
3    Dun Skipper
1    Lace-winged Roadside Skipper
1    Eufala Skipper
2    Ocola Skipper

1    4 inch Black Rat Snake
1    1.5 inch Fence Post Lizard

* Charlie Cameron, Sven Halling, David Heavner, Jim Nottke, Max Nottke, Gene Schepker

Hobcaw Barony NABA Count, August 31, 2013


Date: 31 August 2013
Observers: Donna and Dennis Forsythe
Location: areas N of Hobcaw to Brookgeen Gardens and Huntington Beach SP
Time: 0920-1315 hrs.
51 mi by car

Black Swallowtail   4
Spicebush Swallowtail   1
Palamedes Swallowtail   40
Cloudless Sulfur   81
Little Yellow   2
Sleepy Orange   3
Gray Hairstreak   1
Gulf Fritillary   57
Common Buckeye   2
White Peacock   3
Pearl Crescent   1
Carolina Satyr   1
Silver-spotted Skipper   9
Horace’s Duskywing   5
Zarucco Duskywing   4
Least Skipper   6
Fiery Skipper   16
Whirlabout   1
Rare Skipper   2
Broad-winged Skipper   20
Palatka Skipper   1
Dion Skipper   3
Dun Skipper   1
Salt Marsh Skipper   2
Ocola Skipper   1


Dennis M. Forsythe PhD

Croatan National Forest, NC, NABA Count, Sept 1, 2013


Yesterday (Sep. 1) we held the Croatan NF count, under typical weather conditions — hot, humid, and partly cloudy, but essentially no rain. Thus, the current weather won’t explain the somewhat poor numbers of species and individuals — things are down from previous years — in particular most brushfoots and smaller skippers. The unseasonably cold spring was certainly the culprit.

I’ve added in Bob Cavanaugh’s results, below, and will pay the count fee for him, as he put in considerable effort. Sorry about the mix-up about the locked gate, etc.

Black Swallowtail   5
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail   9
Spicebush Swallowtail   4
Palamedes Swallowtail   257
Cloudless Sulphur   425
Little Yellow   12 Wow! Where did they come from? First report for NC in 2013, and lots of them, to boot!
Sleepy Orange   57
Gray Hairstreak   16
Red-banded Hairstreak   157
Eastern Tailed-Blue   6
Summer Azure   1
Little Metalmark   11
Gulf Fritillary   1
Variegated Fritillary   2
Pearl Crescent   70
Common Buckeye   111
Red-spotted Purple   11
Viceroy   7
Southern Pearly-eye   4
CREOLE PEARLY-EYE   1 finally! A first for the count, but expected. First recent record for Craven County.
Carolina Satyr   116
Georgia Satyr   32
Common Wood-Nymph   15
Silver-spotted Skipper   79
Southern Cloudywing   2
Horace’s Duskywing   2
Zarucco Duskywing   7
Swarthy Skipper   2 terrible!
Clouded Skipper   20
Least Skipper   6
Fiery Skipper   37
Tawny-edged Skipper   4
Crossline Skipper   2
Whirlabout   10
Southern Broken-Dash   8
Little Glassywing   1
Delaware Skipper   3
Byssus Skipper   60 greatly increasing, many habitats; moving north!
Dukes’ Skipper   26 all at a stake-out spot
Dun Skipper   6
Lace-winged Roadside-Skipper   12
Carolina Roadside-Skipper   12
Eufala Skipper   1
Twin-spot Skipper   27

Total = 44 species. Note the absence of anglewings, ladies and Red Admiral, and Monarch; several of the scarce skippers (Berry’s, Reversed R-S) also could not be found. The best find of the day — a Pigmy Rattlesnake, see briefly in a dry ditch by half of the group, before it quickly slithered off into the brush. Thanks to John Fussell, Jack Fennell, Will Cook, Mai Anh Ngo, and Bob Cavanaugh for helping me with the count.

Harry LeGrand

Surry County Count, Sept 7, 2013


The 8th annual count started at the top of Pilot Mountain State Park (PMSP) to avoid the crowds later in the day, but there was thick cold, blowing fog at the summit. While waiting for the fog to burn off, our 14 observers* kicked up a few skippers and found many Silver Spotted Skipper caterpillars on bristly locust (Robinia hispida). Yielding to the persistent fog, we drove to 2000 ft lower elevation at the base of the mountain to the sunny field across from the park entrance. There we found many skippers and a few larger butterflies. The roadside across from the Denny Farm Trail head and the Denny Farm Trail itself yielded several more species. Parties covered the Horse Corral Trail and other areas of the River Section of PMSP, while a small party returned to the mountain summit to count in the sun (and had to wait in a line of cars waiting for a parking spot to open up). The final location was Horne Creek Farm. Of note;
– 14 observers was the most ever for the Surry count.
– 52 species was a new high for the count
– 944 adult butterflies was a new high for the count
– we set a new late date for Surry County for many species
– 400+ Carolina Satyr was very conservative

We all had a great time under excellent conditions, once we escaped the fog,

Jim Nottke

1    Pipevine Swtl
6    Black Swtl
61  Eastern Tiger Swtl
2    Spicebush Swtl
4    Cabbage White
6    Orange Sulphur
21  Cloudless Sulphur
16  Sleepy Orange
1    Harvester
1    Red Banded Hairstreak
33  Eastern Tailed Blue
46  Azure
1    American Snout
4    Variegated Fritillary
16  Great Spangled Fritillary
76  Silvery Checkerspot
48  Pearl Crescent
1    Questionmark
1    Eastern Comma
1    American Lady
1    Red Admiral
4    Common Buckeye
48  Red Spotted Purple and 1 caterpillar on wild plum
1    Viceroy
1    Hackberry Emperor
2    Tawny Emperor
3    Northern Pearly-eye
1    Creole Pearly-eye
1    Appalachian Brown
4    Gemmed Satyr
400+ Carolina Satyr
3    Common Wood Nymph
3    Silver Spotted Skipper and 50+ caterpillars
9    Hoary Edge
3    Horace’s Duskywing
3    Wild Indigo Duskywing
2    Swarthy Skipper
3    Clouded Skipper
38  Least Skipperv
1    Fiery Skipper
3    Pecks Skipper
1    Tawny-edged Skipper
9    Crossline Skipper
2    Southern Broken-dash
7    Northern Broken-dash
4    Little Glassywing
15  Sachem
3    Delaware Skipper
13  Zabulon Skipper
3    Dun Skipper
2    Lace-wing Roadside Skipper
5    Common Roadside Skipper

* John & Margaret Barlow, Brian Bockhahn, Charlie Cameron, Carl Ganser, Sven Halling, Linda Hardison, David Heavner, Monique Korbel, Linda McDermon, Gregg Morris, Jim Nottke, Gene Schepker, Bud Webster

Congaree NP NABA Count, Sept 14, 2013


Observers: Donna and Dennis Forsythe
Date: 14 Sept. 2013
Locations: St. Matthews to Ft. Motte, Congaree Bluffs HP
Time: 1050-1330, 1400-1545, 1705-1730 St. Matthews-Ft Mott; 1545-1705 Congaree Bluffs HP
Coverage: St, Matthews, St. Matthews Sewage Plant, Longstreet, Lang Syne Adams Rds, Wise Rd from river to Ft. Motte, Purple Martin Marsh, Ft. Motte, main trails at Congaree Bluffs HP
Conditions: roadside butterfly suffered as most roadsides in agricultrual area were mowed clean and herbicided!
Mileage 60 by car, 1 on ft
Weather: 69-79 f, scattered to overcast, NE wind

Species: 1st number St. Matthews-Ft. Motte, 2nd number Congaree Bluffs HP

Black Swallowtail 1, 0
E. Tiger Swallowtail 6, 0
Spicebush Swallowtail 7, 0
Palamedes Swallowtail 9, 1
Zebra Swallowtail 0, 1
Cabbage White 4, 0
Cloudless Sulfur 50, 8
Little Yellow 20, 6
Sleepy Orange 20, 0
Gray Hairstreak 6, 3
CERAUNUS BLUE 0, 3 new county record
Eastern Tailed-Blue 0, 1
Summer Azure 2, 0
Gulf Fritillary 15, 4
Variegated Fritillary 10, 8
Question Mark 0, 1
American Lady 3, 0
Red Admiral 1, 0
Common Buckeye 6, 3
Pearl Crescent 1, 0
Red-spotted Purple 14, 6
Viceroy 11, 0
Hackberry Emperor 0, 15
Tawny Emperor 0, 5
Southern Pearly-Eye 1, 0
Carolina Satyr 1, 1
Silver-spotted Skipper 2, 0
Long-tailed Skipper 1, 0
Zarucco Duskywing 7, 1
Wild Indigo Duskywing 1 male, 0
White-checkered Skipper 18, 7
Clouded Skipper 23, 5
Least Skipper 7, 0
Fiery Skipper 9, 1
Little Glassywing 0, 2
BYSSUS SKIPPER 1, 0 new county record
Zabulon Skipper , 0, 1 female
Brazilian Skipper 1 cat on Canna, 0
Ocola Skipper 1, 0

Dennis M. Forsythe PhD
Emeritus Professor of Biology
The Citadel

Blue Ridge Parkway Field Trip Report, Sept 28, 2013


The Carolina Butterfly Society field trip to the Blue Ridge Parkway had an excellent turn out of 21 people on Saturday, 9/28/13. The weather was cloudier and cooler than the forecast had predicted, but despite that, we saw some butterflies. New comers in the group got to see a few higher elevation species that are uncommon or absent in other parts of our region. With congenial people and good butterflies in a beautiful location, it was a fun trip.

Our rendezvous point for the beginning of the trip was the Blue Ridge Music Center at milepost 213 just across the North Carolina state line in Virginia. We spent about 3 hours there exploring the meadows and roadsides. We had a picnic lunch adjacent to the wet meadow beside the Parkway before heading southwest into North Carolina.

From the music center, we explored the roadsides natural flower gardens and meadows all the way to the US 21 exit to Sparta. Although there seemed to be a lot of nectar sources, we had to work for the butterflies we found. Perhaps the cool overcast weather kept the butterflies under cover. Fortunately, there were several participants who were interested in native plants, and most folks enjoyed birding, so no one seemed bored.

Conspicuously absent from our final butterfly list were Pipevine Swallowtails, a species that often is abundant. Particularly disturbing was the near absence of Monarchs, however. We had chosen this weekend because it usually is near the peak of Monarch migration along the Parkway. In previous years on the last full weekend in September, we have seen hundreds. Monarchs have been scarce throughout our area all season. This year along the Parkway we saw only one adult, and despite searching patches of milkweed, only three caterpillars.

Below is our butterfly list for the day. It’s divided by state, showing butterflies in and near the Blue Ridge Music Center in Carroll County, VA, and along the Parkway in Alleghany County, NC

Black Swallowtail011
Cabbage White213
Clouded Sulphur336
Orange Sulphur213
American Copper134
Eastern Tailed-Blue347
Great Spangled Fritillary202
Aphrodite Fritillary101
Meadow Fritillary112
Silvery Checkerspot303
Pearl Crescent213960
Red Admiral202
Common Buckeye213
Purple, Red-Spotted011
Carolina Satyr303
Monarch1+3 cats01+3 cats
Wild Indigo Duskywing101
Least Skipper415
Fiery Skipper011
Peck’s Skipper213
Crossline Skipper101
Little Glassywing101
Zabulon Skipper101
Totals22 species14 species