Monday, March 9, 2009

Second Butterfly--Anglewing

I went on another walk on Sunday to see if I could get a glimpse of the Mourning Cloak I saw yesterday (previous post). Sure enough, the butterfly was in the same area, this time on a large Sugar Maple tree. The tree was oozing sap from the Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker holes all over the tree. The butterfly quickly flew away before I could get a shot.

To the left of the Sugar Maple on the ground, I spotted my second butterfly of spring--an Anglewing:

Anglewing (March 8, 2009)

I tried to get a better shot but the butterfly flew away. I'm not sure of the precise species, maybe comma or hoary anglewing. This group of butterflies hibernates in tree holes or cracks, and lives in the woods as adults. The guide stated that the anglewing eats sap so he might have been on the tree as well.

The beetle Firefly Mimic (Rhaxonycha carolinus) pictured above was feeding on the maple sap along with many flies.

Who knew the Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker would provide so much food for this many insects?


  1. I really enjoyed your post today! I love to learn new things about nature; especially butterflies.

  2. I like the markings on the wings of this butterfly - beautiful! Glad I found you.

  3. I'm trying to ID a butterfly I saw today here in the eastern Massachusetts woods - it's an anglewing, but can't (so far) get closer than that. Colors are more muted than on comma or question mark in my guide. First day I've seen butterflies this year!