Hi Everybody!!

Hi Everybody!!
Welcome to my Hometown!!

Monday, July 22, 2013

YES, WE HAVE NO BUTTERFLIES IN THE SKIES (AND SURPRISE GUEST PHOTO BLOG)



Hi Everybody!!
Two months into summer and still no summer butterflies at the Bird Sanctuary. I stopped in on Saturday to the Garden Shop in town and was informed that one butterfly was spotted about 15 minutes ago. The Shop is covered with flowers and last year one had to dodge the butterflies while shopping in the plants! What Happened? The answer I see the most is: Climate Change. 
I did see one source (below) saying the food plant of the monarchs (milkweed) is not as plentiful as it was. 
Never fear-A great surprise (!) I found some butterflies in the photo album of my G+ friend: +Pedro O . With his permission, I have shared some of his butterflies below. I then went to my own albums and shared some of my butterflies from last year. I encourage You all to be aware of the butterflies in your area and note any changes You are experiencing.  Enjoy!

Current Butterfly News in the Google Index:

ScienceDaily: Insect (including Butterfly) News

www.sciencedaily.com/news/plants_animals/insects_and_butterflies/
Current event articles on insects and butterflies. ... ScienceDaily: Your source for thelatest research news and science breakthroughs -- updated daily ...

Monarch Butterflies Hit New Low; "Worrisome" Trend

news.nationalgeographic.com/news/.../130318-monarch-butterflies-anim...
Mar 18, 2013 - The king of butterflies is in a steady decline due to loss of habitat ...Most adult butterflies live only about a month, but the final .... Latest News.

(Please check the Google Index for all search entries)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Butterfly

Butterfly

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
A butterfly is a mainly day-flying insect of the order Lepidoptera, which includes the butterflies and moths. Like otherholometabolous insects, the butterfly's life cycle consists of four parts: egglarvapupa and adult. Most species arediurnal. Butterflies have large, often brightly coloured wings, and conspicuous, fluttering flight. Butterflies comprise thetrue butterflies (superfamily Papilionoidea), the skippers (superfamily Hesperioidea) and the moth-butterflies(superfamily Hedyloidea). All the many other families within the Lepidoptera are referred to as moths. The earliest known butterfly fossils date to the mid Eocene epoch, 40–50 million years ago.[1]
Butterflies exhibit polymorphismmimicry and aposematism. Some, like the Monarch, will migrate over long distances. Some butterflies have evolved symbiotic and parasitic relationships with social insects such as ants. Some species are pests because in their larval stages they can damage domestic crops or trees; however, some species are agents ofpollination of some plants, and caterpillars of a few butterflies (e.g., Harvesters) eat harmful insects. Culturally, butterflies are a popular motif in the visual and literary arts.
Butterflies
Temporal range: Eocene-Recent, 45–0Ma
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Charaxes brutus natalensis in Dar es Salaam,Tanzania
Scientific classification
Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Arthropoda
Class:Insecta
Order:Lepidoptera
Suborder:Rhopalocera

Life cycle


Mating Common Buckeye Butterflies

The face of a Dryas iulia, more commonly known as a Julia butterfly.
Butterflies in their adult stage can live from a week to nearly a year depending on the species. Many species have long larval life stages while others can remaindormant in their pupal or egg stages and thereby survive winters.[4]
Butterflies may have one or more broods per year. The number of generations per year varies from temperate to tropical regions with tropical regions showing a trend towards multivoltinism.

Eggs


Butterfly eggs are protected by a hard-ridged outer layer of shell, called thechorion. This is lined with a thin coating of wax which prevents the egg from drying out before the larva has had time to fully develop. Each egg contains a number of tiny funnel-shaped openings at one end, called micropyles; the purpose of these holes is to allow sperm to enter and fertilize the egg. Butterfly and moth eggs vary greatly in size between species, but they are all either spherical or ovate.[citation needed]
Butterfly eggs are fixed to a leaf with a special glue which hardens rapidly. As it hardens it contracts, deforming the shape of the egg. This glue is easily seen surrounding the base of every egg forming a meniscus. The nature of the glue is unknown and is a suitable subject for research. The same glue is produced by a pupa to secure the setae of the cremaster. This glue is so hard that the silk pad, to which the setae are glued, cannot be separated.[citation needed]
Eggs are almost invariably laid on plants. Each species of butterfly has its own hostplant range and while some species of butterfly are restricted to just one species of plant, others use a range of plant species, often including members of a common family.[citation needed]
The egg stage lasts a few weeks in most butterflies but eggs laid close to winter, especially in temperate regions, go through a diapause (resting) stage, and the hatching may take place only in spring. Other butterflies may lay their eggs in the spring and have them hatch in the summer. These butterflies are usually northern species, such as the Mourning Cloak (Camberwell Beauty) and the Large and Small Tortoiseshell butterflies.[citation needed]

Caterpillars

Butterfly larvae, or caterpillars, consume plant leaves and spend practically all of their time in search of food. Although most caterpillars are herbivorous, a few species such as Spalgis epius and Liphyra brassolis are entomophagous (insect eating).
Some larvae, especially those of the Lycaenidae, form mutual associations with ants. They communicate with the ants using vibrations that are transmitted through the substrate as well as using chemical signals.[5][6] The ants provide some degree of protection to these larvae and they in turn gather honeydew secretions.
Caterpillars mature through a series of stages called instars. Near the end of each instar, the larva undergoes a process called apolysis, in which the cuticle, a tough outer layer made of a mixture of chitin and specialized proteins, is released from the softer epidermis beneath, and the epidermis begins to form a new cuticle beneath. At the end of each instar, the larvamoults the old cuticle, and the new cuticle expands, before rapidly hardening and developing pigment. Development of butterfly wing patterns begins by the last larval instar.
Butterfly caterpillars have three pairs of true legs from the thoracic segments and up to 6 pairs of prolegs arising from the abdominal segments. These prolegs have rings of tiny hooks called crochets that help them grip the substrate.[7]
Some caterpillars have the ability to inflate parts of their head to appear snake-like. Many have false eye-spots to enhance this effect. Some caterpillars have special structures called osmeteria which are everted to produce foul-smelling chemicals. These are used in defense.
Host plants often have toxic substances in them and caterpillars are able to sequester these substances and retain them into the adult stage. This makes them unpalatable to birds and other predators. Such unpalatibility is advertised using bright red, orange, black or white warning colours, a practice known as aposematism. The toxic chemicals in plants are often evolved specifically to prevent them from being eaten by insects. Insects in turn develop countermeasures or make use of these toxins for their own survival. This "arms race" has led to the coevolution of insects and their host plants.[8]

Wing development


Last instar wing disk, Junonia coenia

Detail of a butterfly wing
Wings or wing pads are not visible on the outside of the larva, but when larvae are dissected, tiny developing wing disks can be found on the second and third thoracic segments, in place of the spiracles that are apparent on abdominal segments. Wing disks develop in association with a trachea that runs along the base of the wing, and are surrounded by a thin peripodial membrane, which is linked to the outer epidermis of the larva by a tiny duct.
Wing disks are very small until the last larval instar, when they increase dramatically in size, are invaded by branching tracheae from the wing base that precede the formation of the wing veins, and begin to develop patterns associated with several landmarks of the wing.
Near pupation, the wings are forced outside the epidermis under pressure from the hemolymph, and although they are initially quite flexible and fragile, by the time the pupa breaks free of the larval cuticle they have adhered tightly to the outer cuticle of the pupa (in obtect pupae). Within hours, the wings form a cuticle so hard and well-joined to the body that pupae can be picked up and handled without damage to the wings.[citation needed]

Pupa


Chrysalis of Gulf Fritillary
When the larva is fully grown, hormones such as prothoracicotropic hormone (PTTH) are produced. At this point the larva stops feeding and begins "wandering" in the quest of a suitable pupation site, often the underside of a leaf.
The larva transforms into a pupa (or chrysalis) by anchoring itself to a substrate and moulting for the last time. The chrysalis is usually incapable of movement, although some species can rapidly move the abdominal segments or produce sounds to scare potential predators.
The pupal transformation into a butterfly through metamorphosis has held great appeal to mankind. To transform from the miniature wings visible on the outside of the pupa into large structures usable for flight, the pupal wings undergo rapid mitosis and absorb a great deal of nutrients. If one wing is surgically removed early on, the other three will grow to a larger size. In the pupa, the wing forms a structure that becomes compressed from top to bottom and pleated from proximal to distal ends as it grows, so that it can rapidly be unfolded to its full adult size. Several boundaries seen in the adult color pattern are marked by changes in the expression of particular transcription factors in the early pupa.[citation needed]

Adult or imago

The adult, sexually mature, stage of the insect is known as the imago. As Lepidoptera, butterflies have four wings that are covered with tiny scales (see photo). The fore and hindwings are not hooked together, permitting a more graceful flight. An adult butterfly has six legs, but in the nymphalids, the first pair is reduced. After it emerges from its pupal stage, a butterfly cannot fly until the wings are unfolded. A newly emerged butterfly needs to spend some time inflating its wings with hemolymph and let them dry, during which time it is extremely vulnerable to predators. Some butterflies' wings may take up to three hours to dry while others take about one hour. Most butterflies and moths will excrete excess dye after hatching. This fluid may be white, red, orange, or in rare cases, blue.[citation needed]

(Please see above link for complete article)


I would like to introduce You to my Google+ friend:   +Pedro O . (The blue link should take You to his Profile Page).
We have been friends since the Picasa Web Album Days (pre G+). Pedro travels and sees some incredible things he shares with us on G+Photos.
I really love his butterflies (below). He has given me permission to share some of his photos here on the Nature Blog. As today is his birthday, we will celebrate +Pedro O  and his beautiful work! To communicate with +Pedro O  in another language, I learned how to use the Google Translator. The Translator is located in your more button at top of your page. I will copy this Introduction and paste it in the Translator. Automatically, it will show the translation to Spanish to copy and paste (below):

Me gustaría presentarles a mi amigo Google+: + O Pedro. (El enlace azul es ir a su página de perfil).
Hemos sido amigos desde los días álbum web de Picasa (pre G+). Pedro viaja y ve algunas cosas increíbles que comparte con nosotros en G+ fotos.
Me encantan sus mariposas (abajo). Él me ha dado permiso para compartir algunas de sus fotos aquí en el blog de la Naturaleza. Como hoy es su cumpleaños, celebraremos + Pedro O y su hermoso trabajo! Para comunicarse con Pedro + O en otro idioma, aprendí cómo utilizar el traductor de Google. Voy a copiar este Intoduction y pegarlo en el traductor. Automáticamente, se le mostrará la traducción de copiar y pegar (continuación):



Photos of +Pedro O  Butterflies:




Hi Pedro! Happy Birthday! Thank You for sharing to the Blog!

https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/113463626674536947213/albums/5673193812955965569/5673193885306873970?pid=5673193885306873970&oid=113463626674536947213



https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/113463626674536947213/albums/5673193812955965569/5673193917844574178?pid=5673193917844574178&oid=113463626674536947213


https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/113463626674536947213/albums/5673193812955965569/5673537090602286818?pid=5673537090602286818&oid=113463626674536947213



https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/113463626674536947213/albums/5673193812955965569/5673537807846969314?pid=5673537807846969314&oid=113463626674536947213



https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/113463626674536947213/albums/5673193812955965569/5673537833534983986?pid=5673537833534983986&oid=113463626674536947213



https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/113463626674536947213/albums/5673193812955965569/5673939314818879714?pid=5673939314818879714&oid=113463626674536947213


https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/113463626674536947213/albums/5673193812955965569/5675023942713029970?pid=5675023942713029970&oid=113463626674536947213


Thank You +Pedro O . Fantastic Butterflies. (Pedro is a Professional Photographer. Be sure to look him up on G+ to see his work!)
Happy Birthday, mi amigo!






Next, here is a slideshow of the Sunset of 
7-21-2913. The sun sank into the spent storm clouds from the rain.





From My G+ Web Albums:

https://plus.google.com/photos/117645114459863049265/albums/5673015710567772385/5673022859342821442?banner=pwa&pid=5673022859342821442&oid=117645114459863049265



https://plus.google.com/photos/117645114459863049265/albums/5673015710567772385/5673023143408188402?banner=pwa&pid=5673023143408188402&oid=117645114459863049265




https://plus.google.com/photos/117645114459863049265/albums/5673015710567772385/5673023160624715554?banner=pwa&pid=5673023160624715554&oid=117645114459863049265



https://plus.google.com/photos/117645114459863049265/albums/5664643404328006801/5664643518977900882?banner=pwa&pid=5664643518977900882&oid=117645114459863049265



https://plus.google.com/photos/117645114459863049265/albums/5664643404328006801/5664644151331655202?banner=pwa&pid=5664644151331655202&oid=117645114459863049265
...this is brendasue signing off from Rainbow Creek.  See You next time! Have sweet butterfly dreams. Please visit my G+ Albums for MANY more pics!!!!!!!

https://plus.google.com/photos/117645114459863049265/albums/5664643404328006801/5664644103462904354?banner=pwa&pid=5664644103462904354&oid=117645114459863049265



https://plus.google.com/photos/117645114459863049265/albums/5664643404328006801/5664643996899067714?banner=pwa&pid=5664643996899067714&oid=117645114459863049265
O+O