Southern Sierra Butterfly Trip

Pictures from a week-long butterfly trip in June 2012 to the southern Sierra Nevada with Jim Brock (co-author of the excellent Kaufman Field Guide to Butterflies of North America) for Sunstreak Tours. We ranged far and wide in our hunt for butterflies from Descanso near San Diego to our base at Sequoia Lodge in Kernville, east to Big Pine, and then on to Bakersfield and the Fresno Dome, before heading back to LAX by way of the Santa Ynez mountains and Santa Barbara. Great group to travel with and Jim's enthusiasm and extensive knowledge made for a fabulous trip.

In seven days of butterflying we saw nearly 100 species, most of which were 'lifers' for me and several which are endemic to narrow regions of California. Before we get to the butterfly pictures below, here are some of the other flora and fauna we saw during the trip. All photographs were taken with a Nikon D90 usually with either a 70-300 mm or an 18-105 mm macro lens.

Click on any of the thumbnails for a larger version.

Critters
Great Basin Collared Lizard

Coast
Horned Lizard

Western
Fence Lizard

Western
Fence Lizard

Western
Fence Lizard

California
Whiptail
Pacific Chorus Frog

Yellow-bellied Marmot
Birds

Blue-gray
Gnatcatcher (nest)

Lazuli
Bunting

Red-tailed Hawk &
American Kestrel

Clark's
Nutcracker

Chukar
 

Chukar
 

Hummingbird
(bathing)

Anna's
Hummingbird
Bugs

 
 

Metallic
Small-headed Fly

Metallic
Small-headed Fly

Metallic
Small-headed Fly

Red-shouldered
Beetle
Odonates
Damselflies

















Bluet
(mating)
Dragonflies








Grappletail
Flowers

Mariposa
Lily

Mariposa
Lily

Mariposa
Lily

Prickly
Poppy

Prickly
Poppy

Prickly
Poppy

Red
Thistle

Orchid
 

Shooting
Star

Shooting
Star




Butterflies
Swallowtails

Anise Swallowtail
(Papilio zelicaon)

Anise Swallowtail
(Papilio zelicaon)

Indra Swallowtail
(Papilio indra)

Pale Swallowtail
(Papilio eurymedon)

Clodius Parnassian
(Parnassius clodius)

Western Tiger Swallowtail
(Papilio rutulus)

Western Tiger Swallowtail
(Papilio rutulus)

Western Tiger Swallowtail
(Papilio rutulus)
Whites and Sulphurs

California Dogface
(Zerene eurydice)

Spring White
(Pontia sisymbrii)

Pearly Marble
(Euchloe hyantis)
Coppers, Blues and Hairstreaks

Acmon Blue
(Plebejus acmon)

Behr's Hairstreak
(Satyrium behrii)

Behr's and Juniper Hairstreaks
(Satyrium behrii & Callophrys gryneus)

Bernardino Square-spotted Blue
(Euphilotes bernardino)

Bramble Green Hairstreak
(Callophrys perplexa)

Brown Elfin
(Callophrys augustinus)

California Hairstreak
(Satyrium californica)

California Hairstreak
(Satyrium californica)

California and Hedgerow Hairstreaks
(Satyrium californica & S. saepium)

Echo Azure
(Celastrina echo)

Gold-hunter's Hairstreak
(Satyrium auretorum)

Gold-hunter's Hairstreak
(Satyrium auretorum)

Gorgon Copper
(Lycaena gorgon)

Gorgon Copper
(Lycaena gorgon)

Gorgon Copper
(Lycaena gorgon)

Greenish Blues
(Plebejus saepiolus)

Greenish Blue
(Plebejus saepiolus)

Hedgerow Hairstreak
(Satyrium saepium)

Hermes Copper
(Lycaena hermes)

Lustrous Copper
(Lycaena cupreus)

Lustrous Copper
(Lycaena cupreus)

Melissa Blue
(Plebejus melissa)

Nelson's Juniper Hairstreak
(Callophrys nelsoni)

San Emigdio Blue
(Plebejus emigdionis)

San Emigdio Blue
(Plebejus emigdionis)

Sylvan Hairstreak
(Satyrium sylvinus)

Tailed Copper
(Lycaena arota)

Tailed Copper
(Lycaena arota)

Veined Blue
(Plebejus neurona)

Western Pine Elfin
(Callophrys eryphon)
Brushfoots

California Ringlet
(Coenonympha tullia)

California Sister
(Adelpha californica)

California Sister
(Adelpha californica)

Edith's Checkerspot
(Euphydryas editha)

Edith's Checkerspot
(Euphydryas editha)

Gabb's Checkerspot
(Chlosyne gabbii)

Gabb's Checkerspot
(Chlosyne gabbii)

Gabb's Checkerspot
(Chlosyne gabbii)

Great Basin Wood-Nymph
(Cercyonis sthenele)

Green Comma
(Polygonia faunus)

Green Comma
(Polygonia faunus)

Leanira's Checkerspot
(Chlosyne leanira)

Lorquin's Admiral
(Limenitis lorquini)

Pacific Fritillary
(Boloria epithore)

Variable Checkerspot
(Euphydryas chalcedona)

Variable Checkerspot
(Euphydryas chalcedona)

Variable Checkerspot
(Euphydryas chalcedona)

Variable Checkerspot
(Euphydryas chalcedona)

Variable Checkerspot
(Euphydryas chalcedona)

Variable Checkerspot
(Euphydryas chalcedona)

Field Crescent
(Phyciodes pulchella)

Zerene Fritillary
(Speyeria zerene)
Skippers

Alkali Skipper
(Pseudocopaeodes eunus)

Columbian Skipper
(Hesperia columbia)

Mojave Sootywing
(Hesperopsis libya)

Mexican Cloudywing
(Thorybes mexicana)

Mexican Cloudywings
(Thorybes mexicana)

Mournful Duskywing
(Erynnis tristis)

Northern White-Skipper
(Heliopetes ericetorum)

Western Branded Skipper
(Hesperia colorado)

Western Branded Skipper
(Hesperia colorado)

Sandhill Skipper
(Polites sabuleti)

Western Cloudywing
(Thorybes diversus)
Moths

Moth
(Annaphila miona)

Eight-spotted Forester Moth
(Alypia octomaculata)
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