Oh, do my feet hurt! They should name me chief dishwasher at MOSI because I washed so many chrysalis boxes today. An unnamed someone apparently didn't clean any of the boxes of the butterflies she released on Friday although she managed to post a picture to Facebook of all the butterflies in their little boxes. Then, the manager stopped in around 10:00 and told me how he had released thirteen yesterday and those were the boxes sitting on the table. That was okay because the managers are doing us a favor by releasing the butterflies when we don't have a volunteer there so it's cool that they leave the dirty boxes. Add to that the ump-teen I released today and I felt like all I did was wash chrysalis boxes.
But I got some cool pictures for you guys in between all that dish washing. Seriously, with the fibromyalgia my back can only take so much and I can only stand for so long so I'd wash some dishes, go get food for the cats, wash dishes, go talk to a family in the flight cage, wash dishes, go net butterflies outside, etc.
When releasing butterflies, they often fly to the first thing they see which happens to be me. Case in point - this Cloudless Sulphur. By the way, it's very awkward taking a picture left-handed because a butterfly is on your right arm.
This Monarch went for my leg.
My brain is a little fried from the heat and too much allergy medicine, but I'll try to organize these pictures into some sort of order. But I may veer off track so just go with the flow. Here's some Malachites. They're supposed to prefer rotting fruit but I keep catching them on the pentas and even saw one on the lantana today! I wonder if that's like cheating on your diet?
We have dozens of Julias right now. Like more than I've ever seen. It's kind of crazy and they were acting a little weird. Maybe they're not used to hanging out with so many of each other? This one got confused and thought it was a Malachite.
There were two mating pairs in the flight cage. I think the female is the one with more dark markings. That's what BAMONA says anyway. I'm too tired to go look for my book.
I honestly have no idea what's going on here. That's why I took a picture.
These two Julias kept tasting the bench. No idea what was on it. Also, here's a look at the whole bench which is shaped like a butterfly. We have more in the classroom including smaller, butterfly chairs. The website on them says www.flowerhouses.com This bench is for the guests, I suppose, but usually I'm like, "Scoot over, I have chronic fatigue." It's also useful when I'm holding caterpillars because it puts me at about kid eye-level.
These Julias were all just hanging out on the coontie. If you look all the way to the left you can see the mating pair by the white penta flowers.
Here's some Zebra Longwings including a mating pair. I had a girl ask me what "mating" meant (she had to be like 10 years old but I think English was not a first language) so I said "reproducing" after quickly deciding that "having sex" might not fly with mom. Luckily, mom helped me out with "making babies". And then I explained that the male would fertilize the eggs and then she would lay them on a plant. I've never had much of a filter and anti-depressants will totally erase whatever you have left. So I have to watch what I say, especially when I'm starting to get tired. Stuff just comes out of my mouth and I'm all, "Oops!" Like last week when I was trying to sound scientific by using the Latin name for the Julia which is Dryas julia. Naturally, I pronounced it like "dry ass". I don't care if it's wrong, I'm saying it like "dry us" from now on. Anyway, wasn't I talking about Zebra Longwings?
Here's some White Peacocks. Love those things. Oh, and there's a Julia in the background of the photos on the lantana.
I also discovered today that Buckeyes like hanging baskets. It was weird, I had two different Buckeyes just basking on the handles of the baskets.
How about a Monarch?
I caught two Gulf Frits outside and they proceeded to go to the top of the screen and freak out. But one calmed down long enough to get this picture.
My bosses must have made a trip to the butterfly farm in Plant City because we mysteriously acquired several species we didn't have before. Such as these Great Southern Whites. The female is the grayer one.
And finally, here's a basket of lantana being attacked by Julias and Zebra Longwings.
In other news, I caught one or two Cloudless Sulphurs. I honestly can't remember but I know I caught at least one. I also found seven Cloudless Sulphur cats so that's cool. We needed another tank of caterpillars so the lab looks full. This is a slow time of year. But I think it's going to be another weird year. We're already having a pretty wet winter and as I was driving home someone's azaleas were already blooming! Granted, they bloom early, but usually February, not the first week of January! Well, I always like a weird year. You never know what's going to fly your way!