Week at Yellowstone

Bob Thomas bthomas at lc3s.com
Thu Jul 18 22:36:23 EDT 2002

On the family vacation to Yellowstone and Mt. Rushmore and doing a
little Lepping on the side with the help of my ten year old son.
List: (only listing species different than home in California)

Coenonympha haydenii - Many
(Hayden's ringlet)
Poladryas arachne - Many near lake Yellowstone
(Arachne checkerspot)
Pontia protodice - Zillions
(Western white)
Parnassius phoebus - Only one

The following were snatched from the front of vehicles as they pulled
into vista points around the park (I'm an opportunist since I don't
carry a net)
Speyeria mormonia - beautiful specimen!
Clossiana kriemhild - an awesome sight as well

The following I couldn't clearly identify:
Many specimens of wood satyr/eyed brown
Many Many Blues and Coppers
Many very fast flying and very large Fritillaries
I looked everywhere for Euphdryas gillettii (Yellowstone checkerspot)
but never was able to see one.
It is clear that I need to start carrying a net and get a better
source for identifying specimens.  Does anyone know of a better ID
book than the Audubon field guide or the Peterson's western
butterflies?  I continue to get stumped when trying to ID with these
two sources :(
I have many questions about differentiating between specimens
(Pterourus rutulus and Pterourus glaucus for example) but I'm
suffering with SUV-lag caused by travelling with four boys in a
confined vehicle - I'll get to it another day.

Overall I'm very pleased with the amount of bugs flying around
Yellowstone.  (many cool Coleoptera and more Dragonflies than I've
ever seen in one place)

Onward to South Dakota...

Bob Thomas
Cameron Park, CA
(currently in Cody, Wyoming)


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