Date: 10/4/19 6:55 am From: John Farmer <ajf-jlf...> Subject: RE: [birders] OT birders: butterfly visitor from the south
Thanks for confirming my sighting. For those of us attuned to the leps, the size, brilliant yellow, and strong flight of a Cloudless are pretty clear signals that we're seeing something other than the Clouded and Orange Sulfurs that are very common at this time of year . I've now had time to check my notes in my copy of Mogen Nielsen's Michigan Butterflies and Skippers and found that I'd seen a Cloudless on 6/8/04 and 9/24/05 here in my yard at 13475 Petersburg Road.
I've been attuned to butterflies since I was a boy on a farm in Cass County, MI, where my interest was spurred by my dad who had collected them as a boy in NY State. In fact, I inherited from him a catalog of prices to be paid by a firm in NYC for specimens collected all over the world. I don't know that dad ever sold anything he caught and I know that I didn't, but it is interesting to know that in that era all manner of natural ephemera -- from bird eggs and feathers to butterflies and moths -- were the focus of moneyed collectors. In a time of declining insect populations we can be pleased that the popularity of those hobbies has passed.
From: Roger Kuhlman <rkuhlman...> Sent: Friday, October 4, 2019 1:28 AM8 To: John Farmer <ajf-jlf...>; Birders UM <birders...> Subject: RE: [birders] OT birders: butterfly visitor from the south
Yes John that is certainly Cloudless Sulphur. Seeing one in early October is a very good find. Often late in Summer and early Fall some Cloudless Sulphurs are known to migrate north randomly and sometimes travel good distances from much further South. I have never seen one here in October but have seen a few Cloudless Sulphurs in September over my past 23 years doing butterfly surveys in the four Southeast Michigan county area.
I'll defer to Roger Kuhlman, John Swales, or any of the other more knowledgeable lepidopterists than I for a certain ID, but to me this appeared to be a male cloudless sulfur. Followed it for around 10 minutes in Mooreville south of Ann Arbor at around 3:00 PM today. It was very skitterish of my presence, hence the poor photo. Only the second or possibly third of this species that I've seen in Michigan in my 78 years.