I saw a few more butterflies than this while in the Pacific Northwest and northern California, but these are the ones I was able to photograph! The butterflies seemed to be much more fluttery and flitty than the ones I’m used to in New Zealand, which resulted in a certain amount of frustration.
I’ll post the photos in the order I took them, so first up is the Pacific fritillary (Boloria epithore), commonly found from California to British Columbia in Canada.
I was so excited when I saw the beauty below clinging on like grim death to its flower at the aptly named Windy Ridge viewpoint at Mt St Helens … excited again when I managed to get some good shots of it … and really excited when I identified it as a rare form of checkerspot butterfly! But that’s the danger of the internet – one wrongly named photo becomes ‘fact’. Of course, it turned out to be a fairly common form of the Euphydryas species, but none the less beautiful for that.
Found the common buckeye (Junonia coenia), below, at a lavender farm cum winery cum olive grove in the Sonoma Valley in northern California, near Santa Rosa. My hostess confirmed the identification but said she had never seen one in the area before! Reading about them, it seems they’re found in eastern Canada and all over the US, apart from the Pacific Northwest …