My first monarch of the year!

I’ve missed having monarchs (Danaus plexippus) in the yard this summer, and was delighted to see one nectaring on our Joe-Pye weed (Eupatoriaum fistulosum) recently. However, I didn’t have the camera and didn’t manage to document it.

Joe-pye weed
Joe-Pye weed, a good nectar source for monarchs and other pollinators

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2nd caterpillar weekend at Natural Bridge

Click the image to open the 2-page PDF (700 KB)

Natural Bridge State Resort Park is holding their second Caterpillar Weekend – August 23-24; view the two-page flier (700 KB PDF). I attended this event last year, and was amazed at the variety of caterpillars we discovered.  It was great fun and I learned a lot!

I wish caterpillars were better understood and appreciated. It seems many folks think of them as bad ‘worms’. Caterpillars are not worms – they are one stage in the life cycle of butterflies and moths. Although a few can be classified as pests, most are beneficial. All of them are an important part of nature and the food chain, especially for adult and baby birds.

I am fascinated by caterpillars and appreciate the chance to learn more about them. I look forward to this year’s event and invite you to join us. It’s a great chance to meet others who appreciate nature, and to enjoy one of Kentucky’s beautiful state parks.