On ontario

Alan Wormington wormington at juno.com
Sun Nov 5 10:27:59 EST 2000

Great information, but please explain the records of the following
species at Point Pelee during recent years:

Long-tailed Skipper
Funereal Dusky-Wing (2 records / 2 different years)
Brazilian Skipper
Ocola Skipper (now recorded 5 different years, only one record elsewhere
in Canada)
Great Southern White
Sleepy Orange (2 records / 2 different years)
Marine Blue

If Marine Blue can make it here from the U.S. southwest, I'm sure a
couple of *Fixsenia favonius ontario* can stray to southern Ontario from
somewhere in the northern United States.

Alan Wormington
Leamington, Ontario
[currently 35 miles E of North Padre Island, Texas]

New Web Page (incomplete):  www.Point-Pelee.com


On Sun, 5 Nov 2000 09:20:57 -0500 "Ron Gatrelle" <gatrelle at tils-ttr.org>
>     Fixsenia favonius favonius is very common here in coastal S.C. 
> but
> seldom seen most years because three things do not coincide: adult 
> flight,
> preferred nectar source, and butterfly observers/collectors. For 
> example, in
> those years with a late or cool spring the adult emergence occurs at 
> the
> same time as certain flowering shrubs (the butterflies are out at 
> the same
> time but the plants bloom later). In these years it's found in the
> thousands. The key word here is found. The other years it is just as
> abundant, but lep-ers seldom find it due to its different flight 
> habits. I
> suspect the same is true further north -- it is there but seldom 
> seen some
> years.
>       Parrhasius m-album follows this same pattern locally. The 
> second brood
> of m-album occurs with the only brood of favonius. (The first brood 
> of
> m-album is late February/March.)In years that one is seen abundantly 
> in May
> so is the other, and vice versa. It is therefore not only not a 
> surprise to
> me that m-album was found at the same place and week as favonius 
> ontario in
> Canada -- it is what I would expect. This is evidence that the same
> *vanishing act* occurs in the north. Both species have the same host 
> and
> same flight period.
>      While it is true that m-album is known to be a wanderer, 
> ontraio is
> not. Ontario females in particular stay in close proximity to their 
> habitat
> area. Birders are so accustomed to individuals of many bird species 
> moving
> long distances that they have transferred this pattern to 
> butterflies. The
> vast majority of all butterflies only exist in localized habitats. 
> They must
> also exist in mass -- not as pairs or small flocks as birds. Thus, 
> if two
> ontario are found in the same basic area at the same time the 
> breeding
> population is probably not more then two miles away. This species 
> does not
> disappear and suddenly reappear. It was there all along but in a 
> different
> niche than the lepidopterist -- as with E. laeta.
>     In Butterflies of Canada it is stated that there is _no_ 
> evidence of
> ontario or m-album breeding in Ontario. I disagree to this extent. 
> There is
> no conclusive evidence that it does not breed there. However, the 
> fact that
> specimens of both (often sympatric) species are occasionally found 
> in
> southern Ontario is *evidence* that it (they) may be resident in an 
> as yet
> undiscovered colony.
>     E.atala was assumed to be extinct in S. Florida. It never was. 
> Some were
> so sure they named a whole publication after it.
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