Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Butterfly Moment

Listened to a butterfly expert give a talk to a small audience of Milbridge Library goers. I realized again how much I respect these creatures that I often don't notice lighting on a daisy or a cluster of milkweed flowers. But jeez, they're remarkable. Did you know the monarch butterfly lays only one egg per leaf on the milkweed plant. Somehow she knows the newly hatched young will eat the egg casing first and then find the leaf to eat. Any unhatched relative would be eaten by that firstborn. Interesting. The expert reminded us of the defenses butterflys and moths have... they eyes on upper or lower wings trick birds into thinking they're about to feast of the body. But alas, they clip the wing and the "eye" decoy, and many butterflies survive.

The butterfly guy travels to Mexico during the month of November which holds special meaning for many Catholics there. All Souls DAy commemorates the day many believe the souls of lost ones are closest to them in the year. The ancient Aztecs believed spirits of dead ones would come back as monarch butterflies and hummingbirds. Every year around this holiday, monarch butterflies migrate to Mexico and are greeted as spirits.

I'd love to see this happening. Hope your garden is full of these souls and I for one will step up on my resolve to plant more for them...milkweek, butterfly bush, bee balm, etc.