Question Mark: Punctuation or Butterfly?

6:00 AM

Both! Question Marks are both a valuable punctuation mark and a beautiful butterfly. I hope I don't disappoint anyone keen on punctuation, however this post focuses on the later of the two. In September I visited the Rosetta McClain Gardens and had the opportunity to view several species of butterflies including the Question Mark (Polygonia interrogationis) named for the marking on it's outer hind wing that resembles the punctuation mark. This little beauty mimics dry leaves on the ground with its wings closed, but when they open, wow!!! A different punctuation mark is necessary. 😆 So why is it called a Question Mark? This beauty gets it‘s name from the two white markings on it‘s outer hind wing that resembles a ?“.
Question Mark (Polygonia interrogationis)
Question Mark (Polygonia interrogationis)
Question Mark (Polygonia interrogationis)- With Question Mark Marking on Hind Wing
In addition to Question Marks, I also spotted several other interesting species of butterflies, bees and birds. The butterfly list included: Monarch (Danaus plexippus), Red Admiral (Vanessa atalanta), American Lady (Vanessa virginiensis), Silver Spotted Skipper (Epargyreus clarus) and Cabbage White (Pieris rapae). 
Red Admiral, (Vanessa atalanta)
Red Admiral, (Vanessa atalanta)

American Lady (Vanessa virginiensis)
American Lady (Vanessa virginiensis)


Unforgettably we didn't spot any of the Giant Swallowtails (Papilio cresphontes) we were hoping might be around, but a variety of bee species were out in the gardens as well. Of the bees I could identify there were Broad-handed Leaf-cutter Bees (Megachile latimanus), Eastern Carpenter Bees (Xylocopa virginica), Green Sweat Bees (Agapostemon virescens), Long-horned Bee (Melissodes sp.) and Honey Bees (Apis mellifera).
Green Sweat Bee (Agapostemon virescens)
Green Sweat Bee (Agapostemon virescens)- Male
Long-horned Bee (Melissodes sp.)
Long-horned Bee (Melissodes sp.)
Broad-handed Leaf-cutter Bee (Megachile latimanus)
Broad-handed Leaf-cutter Bee (Megachile latimanus)
Eastern Carpenter Bee (Xylocopa virginica)
Eastern Carpenter Bee (Xylocopa virginica)
Honey Bee (Apis mellifera)
Honey Bee (Apis mellifera)

The Rosetta McClain Gardens are stunning and produced many interesting pollinators. I can't wait to return in the spring to see what jewels are flying around.
Bumble Bees on Sunflower
Bumble Bees on Sunflower

Cheers!


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