What a morning! I was taking pictures with 6+ macro on my camera when I saw this butterfly heading for the Spicy Jatropha bush in front of me. It was one of those moments when you go... Darn! I've got the wrong lens on and only got a moment to get this shot.
But I was wrong. The Monarch settled down on the flower and sipped and sipped... the proboscis thread-like drinking mechanism unrolling, collecting and rolling back up over and over. I was afraid to breathe... I was a mere few inches away. But despite my closeness and a pretty strong breeze, it stayed and stayed and I took shot after shot as the sun lit its wings!
The Monarch is one of the milkweed butterflies. The Florida Viceroy butterfly is a rich, brown color in the southern part of Florida where it mimics the Queen, and red or orange in the northern counties where it mimics the Monarch. It prefers swamps and moist areas along streams and lake edges where willow trees prosper in the moist soils.
Monarch Butterfly, Danaus plexippus, Danainae, Nymphalidae