A Bonaparte’s and a Ring-billed Gull at Fulton Pond in southern Howard County on December 11. This is the last Bonaparte’s I saw in 2014 at this location.
A male Eastern Bluebird finishes his bath at Meadowbrook Park on December 13
Ruby-crowned Kinglet eating suet at our home feeder in Columbia, Maryland on December 18. I have never seen a kinglet eat suet before.
A Hermit Thrush visits our feeder area in Columbia on December 18.
Another view pf the Hermit Thrush. The last time we had one was in 2007.
A Merlin, a small but pugnacious falcon, perches on the top of a tree in Columbia.
A Winter Wren pops up for a very brief view at Font Hill Park in Howard County
A female Purple Finch- the heavy streaking and white eye line distinguishing it from a House Finch- perches amid natural Christmas ornaments in western Howard County on December 20. Purple Finches arrived in larger than usual numbers this year.
Female Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (white throat instead of red) poses in western Howard County on December 20
A female House Finch finds an apple to its liking–western Howard County, December 20
A late Common Buckeye looks for a sunny spot in Elkridge on November 7
This yellow Palm Warbler took a break from tail wagging and perched quietly for a few minutes on a fence at the Elkhorn Garden Plots on October 31.
Fiery Skipper at the Elkhorn Garden Plots in Columbia on November 4th. Usually they are gone by now but there has not been a killing frost yet this fall.
A Brown Snake looks for warmth along a path at Meadowbrook Park in Howard County, Maryland on November 9
This white form of the Clouded Sulphur is at Meadowbrook Park in Howard County on November 9. Only a few butterflies are left now. Orange and Clouded Sulphurs are some of the latest flying species.
A red-banded Hairstreak visits white asters in Elkridge on October 24. The latest of this species I have ever seen. Overall butterfly numbers way down after the recent storm and loss of nectar plants– the end of the season is upon us.
This is a Shadow Darner, a late season dragonfly, at the Elkhorn Garden Plots in Columbia on October 24.
A late Common Buckeye basking in Elkridge, Howard County on October 27 shows off its bright colors.
One of three Fiery Skipper butterflies still at the Elkhorn Garden Plots in Columbia on the last warm day of October 28.
A Yellow-collared Scape Moth visits buddleia flowers at the Elkhorn Garden Plots on October 28.
A late Grasshopper Sparrow was caught hiding at Meadowbrook Park in Howard County on October 28.
This Ocola Skipper likes the purple butterfly bush at the Elkhorn Garden Plots on October 8. This is the second latest date I have seen this southern skipper in Maryland. 2014 has been a good year for them.
A Common Buckeye opens its wings amid white heath asters in Elkridge Maryland on October 6.
Gray Hairstreak at Patel Drive in Elkridge on October 9th. The light orange abdomen indicates this one is a male. I am not usually able to get a picture of hairstreaks with their wings open like this.
A pretty Variegated Fritillary visits the abundant white heath asters at Patel Drive in Elkridge on October 9th.
One lone male Fiery Skipper visits the butterfly bush at the Elkhorn Garden Plots in Columbia, Maryland on a cool October 12.
Wild Indigo Duskywing skipper at Patel Drive in Elkridge on October 17. These butterflies used to be uncommon until their larvae switched to the introduced Crown Vetch planted alongside many roadways.
A very late Black Swallowtail visits Red clover blossoms at the Elkhorn Garden Plots on October 21
A Common Checkered Skipper makes an interesting pattern contrast with wood mulch at the Elkhorn Garden Plots on October 21.
A White M Hairstreak shows just a hint of blue underneath. When it flies, the top side is a brilliant blue color. This one was in Elkridge, Howard County on October 4. This is the latest I have ever seen one in Maryland. The larval host plants are oak trees which are common, but I usually only seen one of these beauties per year.
Common Buckeyes continue flying into October. This one was in Elkridge in late September.
An Orange Sulphur visits white aster flowers in Elkridge on October 4th.
Monarchs are still flying south but not in as large numbers as a few days ago. This one was in Elkridge on September 30.
Variegated Fritillary–this is another butterfly that continues flying up until the first frost. Small white aster is a good late season nectar source for many butterflies.
A male Fiery Skipper enjoys the late bounty of white asters.
Another skipper butterfly that flies in late summer and fall is the Common Checkered Skipper. Despite the name, it is an attractive animal seen up close as its picture shows.
A female Black Swallowtail in Columbia, Howard County. Most swallowtails disappear by late September so I was surprised to find this one in pristine condition on on September 27.
Small can be beautiful—an Eastern Tailed Blue at Gateway Business Park in Columbia on October 2nd.
A Gray Hairstreak at Gateway Business Park in Columbia on October 2nd. This is the more common hairstreak in Howard County in late summer and early fall.
A Common Buckeye in the Columbia Elkhorn Garden Plots on September 18
A fresh Monarch butterfly on migration visits white eupatorium at Gateway Business Park in eastern Howard County
A Painted Lady also at Gateway Business Park. Five of these joined the migrating Monarchs.
Ocola Skipper is a southern butterfly that immigrates northward in late summer/early fall. Here it visits Gateway Business Park’s flowers.
A late Great-spangled Fritillary visits zinnias at the Elkhorn Garden Plots on September 9
One of the last swallowtails, this female Black also visited flowers at the Elkhorn Plots on September 5.
A fresh Variegated Fritillary visits the Elkhorn Garden Plots in Columbia Maryland on September 21.