In Transect A, along the Guana River / Guana Lake past the dam, the rarely seen Black Swallowtail butterfly (Papilio polyxenes) was among them, as well as a Queen (Danaus gilippus), a Dainty Sulphur, (Nathalis iole) Cloudless Sulphurs (Phoebis sennae), Phaon Crescents (Phyciodes phaon) nectaring on Hop-clover (Trifolium Campestre), a Common Buckeye (Junonia coenia), numerous Great Southern Whites (Ascia monuste), many of the latter species flying in frantic circles upward to the tree tops,traveling in groups of three! The Salt Marsh Skipper (Panoquina panoquin), with its prominent white streak on the hind wing, was also present along with Ceraunus Blue (Hemiargus ceraunus) with its single spot on the hind wing. In the Uplands transects (Transects B, C, and D) Great Southern Whites were also encountered as well as the annual spring visitor Viola’s Wood Satyr (Megisto cymbals). Great Southern Whites use Saltwort (Batis maritime) as a host plant for their caterpillars; this plant is abundant within the GTM Research Reserve habitats, which could account for the high numbers of this species.
|Great Southern White|
|Salt Marsh Skipper|
|Viola's Wood Satyr|
|Black Swallowtail Caterpillar|
Other Wildlife Observed
We rescued an Eastern Glass Lizard (Ophisaurus ventralis) that was caught on the concrete steps near the dam, and we all got a good look before releasing it in the adjacent grassy area. We also saw a Racerunner (Cnemidophorus sexlineatus) slithering through the grass.
|Eastern Glass Lizard (Ophisaurus ventralis)|