From the previous year, my butterfly season started with a series of Black Swallowtail Chrysalises over wintering in a cage I kept down in my basement. Well one emerged prematurely which lead to this shot.
Now I don't think I did anything particularly bad. Even around carrot farms this species is not considered a pest. For whatever reason they just don't spread dramatically in huge numbers.
I found this Silver Spotted Skipper Caterpillar nestled on my False Indigo tree. It's a new plant I'm trying out, which will hopefully flower this year. Sadly I think a bird ate this little guy.
Hummingbird Moth laying eggs on my Coral Honeysuckle.
It wasn't until I took a trip to Cape May with a few friends that I really saw them this year. There were stands of Seaside Goldenrod planted all along the beach specifically to help the Monarch migration. While I saw a few dozen flying around it really wasn't enough to give me any sort of hope that their population was doing well at all.
I know that they're by no means endangered. It's simply that the population that migrates through the eastern half of North America will be lost. They're doing okay out in California, apparently there's a population that migrates through South America as well, but what a shame it would be to never see the butterfly that inspired me to garden to ever flutter through my yard again.