Gossamer Tapestry

Reflections on conservation, butterflies, and ecology in the nation's heartland

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Palm Springs Sunday Morning

Greetings from Sunny (and warm) Palm Springs. We got in about noon time yesterday. Even though our flight was on time, we didn't have checked luggage and Palm Springs City Hall is mere steps from the airport, we did not arrive in time to attend the anti-Proposition 8 rally yesterday. Thanks to all my readers who did turn out in their home cities.

So far, we've done little beyond hanging out by the pool. We had dinner with our friend Steve from Los Angeles last night. This morning, our hosts wanted to make sure that I got to see the caterpillars devouring their passion vine.

Caterpillar on Passion Vine

They're gulf fritillaries (Agraulis vanillae), and there are caterpillars all over the vines. Dozens of adults are flitting through the yard here. I caught one that had just emerged from its chrysalis. Today's vocabluary word is exuvium, the empty husk of a chrysalis that a butterfly has emerged from.

A freshly-emerged gulf fritillary sits on it's exuvium.

There were numerous chrysalides from which adults had not yet emerged, too.

Gulf Fritillary Chrysalis

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At 12:39, Blogger Celeste said...

Glad you are enjoying the sun too - Dominick and I just had breakfast on the beach and watched dozens of dolphins porpoising through the waves. Sorry I beat you to it on the exuvia!!! - http//celestialrambling.blogspot.com/2008/09/one-of-those-good-to-be-alive-days.html

At 16:41, Blogger Lemuel said...

We've "enjoyed" blustery winds, fog, rain, gloom, more gloom, and cold. I know being in Palm Springs really makes you want to come back to such stuff.

At 19:21, Blogger Kathiesbirds said...

Wow Doug! This is amazing and I love the new word, exuvium! Hmmn, now I'll have to find a new way to use it. It could be a powerful metaphor in a story or a poem or even as the title for a piece of art. Enjoy your visit and don't sit on too many exuviums!

At 21:46, Blogger Ur-spo said...

lovely photos as always

PS - Jerrold will be joining us next winter.

At 03:27, Blogger Gallicissa said...

You seem to be having a great time. That last shot of yours woud have looked good for a Sky Watch Friday. Good luck with your hunts!

At 05:53, Blogger cedrorum said...

Great post and pictures. We are looking at a high of 48 and windy; cold for this time of year. Thanks for the new word. Be careful in that chaparral.

At 10:52, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In July, Gulf Fritillaries completely decimated my blue passion flower vine, too. I hope it bounces back.


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