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July 27, 2022

American Lady

Notes and Changes since last report

  • It was 90°F, partly cloudy and breezy on July 27, 2022.
  • 21 butterfly species made for a good day.
  • Swarms of northern broken-dash were swirling above the back Old Hayfield.
  • This week's trail report covers the Wappinger Creek Trail side of the trail system.

The Trails

  • With August just around the corner, closely mowed grass was starting to brown.
  • A hint of goldenrod yellow was beginning to appear across the front Old Hayfield.
  • Spotted knappweed had attracted an American copper.
  • Again the most common non-skipper was common wood-nymph.
  • A silver-spotted skipper surprised me by going under a leaf, presumably for shade.
  • It used to be a surprise, but giant swallowtail has been gracing our gardens for several years now - it had always been a more southern species.
  • The bold yellow expanse below makes id easy, as does the pattern of yellow stripes on black above.
  • Ah, but how lighting changes everything!
  • A well worn great spangled fritillary appeared to have dodged a bird attack loosing just a bit of hindwing.
  • Wow, another surprise was American lady. There is so much going on and with the screaming pink it is hard to notice the lilac appointments.
  • A flash of orange across the Sedge Meadow Trail, then nothing... a question mark doing its best loose bark impression.
  • The silvery arc and dot made the namesake question mark. In this photo, there is an extra dark spot to distinguish it from the similar eastern comma.
  • Down along the damp and sunny part of the trail, Appalachian browns were perched or patrolling in the sun.
  • In the back Old Hayfield, a monarch was visiting the wild bergamot.
  • Every gap in the field held a web of a large black and yellow Argiope spider - this one cautiously attended by a much smaller male.
  • Everything was so active in the sun and heat, but finally there was a shot at the olive and maroon hummingbird clearwing.
  • The similar snowberry clearwing is more black than maroon and has a stripe from the eye down towards the legs.
  • A dun skipper was taking a break from feeding.
  • The little white dots - especially the notched, square one - indicate it's the female. The male has no dots.
  • Little orange mint moths were common today.
  • Tough to separate from the dun skipper, the Northern broken-dash has a thicker hindwing spot band, usually with a bump to make it look like a "3".
  • Above, the distinction is much greater. Here, the female has white dots where the male has orange..
  • Down on the Wappinger Creek Trail, an ebony jewelwing paused. Again, white dots indicate the female.
  • Invasive Japanese stilt grass was getting big enough to be easily recognized. The shiny mid-rib separates it from similar grasses.
  • Mind the stinging nettle on both sides of the path.
  • The less familiar wood nettle's flower should be a hint even if the leaf looks innocent.
  • Cool and quiet was the scene at the Appendix - the end of the trail today.
  • It took some patience, but one little wasp was seen flying around the mounds. There must be a schedule to be discovered.
  • Next week: the Cary Pines Trail the side of the trail system.


  • 1 Red-tailed Hawk
  • 1 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
  • 2 Eastern Wood-Pewee
  • 1 Red-eyed Vireo
  • 1 Blue Jay
  • 1 Tufted Titmouse
  • 3 House Wren
  • 1 American Robin
  • 2 Gray Catbird
  • 2 Eastern Towhee
  • 1 Field Sparrow
  • 1 Indigo Bunting
  • 4 American Goldfinch
  • 2 Hummingbird Clearwing
  • 9 Snowberry Clearwing
  • 1 Wood nettle
  • 2 Black Swallowtail
  • 1 Giant Swallowtail
  • 10 Eastern Tiger Swallowtail
  • 12 Cabbage White
  • 3 Clouded Sulphur
  • 2 American Copper
  • 7 Great Spangled Fritillary
  • 1 Meadow Fritillary
  • 21 Pearl Crescent
  • 1 Question Mark
  • 1 American Lady
  • 1 Red-spotted Purple
  • 1 Northern Pearly-eye
  • 1 Appalachian Brown
  • 1 Little Wood-Satyr
  • 4 Common Ringlet
  • 39 Common Wood-Nymph
  • 2 Monarch
  • 14 Silver-spotted Skipper
  • 56 Northern Broken-Dash
  • 8 Dun Skipper