Rainy Season Collecting vs. Dry Season Collecting

Glaucus glaucus at earthlink.net
Mon Dec 5 22:44:30 EST 2005

Hi Lepsters,

Here's a question I've been curious about for quite a while...

The general consensus is that rainy season collecting is better for
butterflies than dry season collecting. Why is this so? Is there a
physiological reason in butterflies that leads to greater abundance or
existence in the rainy season moreso than in the dry season?

Some collectors say that puddling is seen in greater abundance in wet
seasons, though I have seen large numbers of puddling species in Brazil in
July, the heart of the dry season. I would think that the peak time for
puddling would be in the dry season, when fluids are not as abundant as in
the wet season. I have collected in the rainy season, and I have noted
larger numbers of Papilionids on some trips, but in general, I have seen
less numbers of virtually everything in the rainy season, and the quality is
certainly rarely good enough for collection purposes in the wet season. It
seems to me that a dry season timeframe would be better in several ways. As
we all know, butterflies do not fly in any numbers on cloudy days or when it
is raining. Having a sunny day, 5 to 8 hours, provides ample time to collect
good numbers, see courtship behaviors, collect at flowers, and use bait

I'd be curious to know your thoughts and preferences. If you had a week or
two weeks to devote to collecting during the year, what would be more
desirable, wet or dry season collecting? A totally rainy trip to French
Guiana some years back yielded 73 butterflies total in one week. A dry
season trip to Ecuador yielded close to 1200 in one week, with over 150
species collected. Any thoughts?? Thanks!


glaucus at earthlink.net


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