Normally I don't look for butterflies in early February because it's too cold.
However, today was unusual. The afternoon was sunny and temperatures maxed out
at 85 deg F which was 25 degrees above the average high temperature for this
day. Also, this was a record high for this date. So I went to Eddie Jones
Park to see if I could see any butterflies at all. I was not disappointed. I
saw seven species that I identified and several more that were flybys that I
could not positively identify. The only flower blooming was false garlic so
butterflies had only that flower for nectar so butterflies were not sitting
still. The seven species included four falcate orangetips, my favorite early
spring species. My previous earliest date for this species was February 16.
The complete list and previous early dates is below. This is surely an unusual
Today Feb 7 Previous Early Date
4 FalcateOrangetip Feb 16
3 Cloudless Sulphur These emerge any warm day in winter.
2 Sleepy Orange Feb 23
2 QuestionMark Feb 16
1 CommonBuckeye These emerge any warm day in winter.1
GoatweedLeafwing Feb 23
1 un ID'd small Satyr Earliest date for gemmed satyr Feb 28;
carolina satyr Mar 8