Subject: Butterfly Survives Storm!
Location: Coryell County, Texas
September 17, 2013 6:49 pm
I was watching for the first rain in weeks this afternoon, when a sudden downpour hit. I dashed to the back porch to watch the rain and smell the freshness in the air. Lo and behold, I spotted an orange butterfly across the yard, trying to find shelter from the suddenly-pelting, huge raindrops. Oh, no, I thought the butterfly would never survive. It tried to shelter on one branch of a small crepe myrtle, then fluttered to a sturdier twig. Pounding rain and strong winds drove me indoors. I hoped the butterfly would make it, but the crepe myrtle was bending and thrashing in the wind. Twenty minutes later, the tap turned off as suddenly as it had begun. I grabbed the camera and crossed to the crepe myrtle in order to try to locate the butterfly. Amazingly, it was still clinging to its twig! It was drenched, and didn’t move an iota as I took some photos. I retreated to the porch to watch the butterfly from afar and see what would happen. Within 15 minutes, it began to fa n its wings, 3 or 4 slow beats, then resting a few minutes. This process went on for another 15 minutes or so. Next, the butterfly began to flutter and move around the shrub. I approached to take a few more photos, and off it flew, seemingly none the worse for wear. Amazing!
Is it a Queen butterfly, Danaus gilippus?
It appears that because of the black scent scale patches on the hind wings, that this Queen is a male of the species. Thank you for providing our readers with your thrilling account of a butterfly caught in a downpour.