The Zebra Swallowtail

zebra swallowtail 1 2019

Here is an image of one of my favorite butterflies, the Zebra Swallowtail. I photographed this wonderful specimen at Splinter Ridge FWA here in Madison Indiana.

The Zebra has such a unique appearance and their sometime ferocious defense of their territory make them such an amazing species of butterfly you can’t help but admire them.

I once watched a beat up male chase away every other butterfly trying to feed on a patch of butterfly weed and after running them all off he turned his attention to me lol !!

And if you ever watch one flying thru an open field with it’s beautiful tail twisting in the wind you would understand what a wonderful animal they are. So if you ever get a chance to be out and come across the Zebra, take some time to sit and observe this great wonder of the natural world !!

Halloween Pennant

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The Halloween Pennant is a great dragonfly with a very distinct color that has you thinking Halloween with the warm fall color !!

I captured this one at Big Oaks NWR not long ago, I have kinda stayed away from this type of photography because of the speed of these beautiful insects. But after hanging around watching them for a while I see they have a penchant for flying back to the same spot you scared them from if you give them some time.

So if wildflowers and butterflies weren’t enough I have to add dragonflies to the list of things to photograph as well …I guess it’s better than hanging out in bars lol !!

Clifty Falls Wildflowers…Trout Lily

Another great wildflower that grows in our area is the Trout Lily. Found in large clusters this beautiful little flower gets it’s name for the trout like pattern on the leaves of the newly emerging wildflower.

The trout lily sprouts and flowers in early spring, before new tree leaves grow. Plants grow from a white bulb that have a tooth-like shape. This wildflower will usually grow when underground rhizomes spread and form clusters or colonies. Mature plants also spread by seeds. Ants can scatter the seeds, eating part of the seed and leaving the rest to germinate. And some trout lily colonies can be 200 to 300 years old.

The plants are found in woodland habitats and moist hillsides the stamens can either be yellow or black and can be quite large for such a small plant. The Trout Lily is just another great example of all the wonderful wildflowers that are on display right now just waiting for you to view.

Madison in Bloom

Not only are the great wildflowers that grow thru out are natural area in bloom but the wonderful trees and flowers that line the streets and historic homes in Madison Indiana are starting to put on a show as well.

Madison has an amazing riverfront lined with many blooming trees especially the lovely cherry trees donated by Arvin Sango. The Lanier Mansion has wonderful blooming trees as well and other flowers that are now beginning to bloom.

So if you are looking for a weekend getaway to get outdoors and see some beautiful scenery give Madison a visit you won’t be disappointed.

Tunnel Falls

tunnel falls 1 2019

When you think of Indiana usually its basketball or corn fields that come to mind but in Southern Indiana there are an amazing number of large waterfalls that dot the canyons and gorges that lead into the Ohio River.

In Jefferson County there are over forty falls that are forty feet or bigger that call this area home. Clifty Falls has several large beautiful falls including Tunnel which is pictured here. Tunnel Falls is roughly 83 feet tall and fifteen feet wide and after an extended rainy period it can become quite the scene to behold.

With all the wildflowers and waterfalls our area has to offer Jefferson County can be quite the eco friendly place to come for a weekend trip to experience all the natural beauty.

Early Season Wildflowers

 

Here is a small gallery of the wonderful early season wildflowers that grace the canyons and woodlots of Jefferson County Indiana.

Going clockwise we have Bloodroot, Hepatica,Harbinger of Spring and Rue Anenome . All of these little gems can now be found blooming all across Southern Indiana and many other places across the Midwest.

There is not much in life that I enjoy more than wandering all the wild places that our home has to offer and attempt to capture and share the beauty of these amazing examples of the natural elegance that the spring bloom has to offer.

It doesn’t last long and it is something you really must witness in person. So get out of the house take a hike to one of the great natural areas we have here in Southern Indiana.

 

Hepatica

hepatica 1 2019

It is so hard to keep up but its spring and that means wildflowers and I will never pass up a chance to share one of my favorite photography subjects with you.

One of the great early season wildflowers is Hepatica a wonderful little flower that usually begin to bloom in middle to late March on wooded slopes and ravines.

Right now the woods are alive with them and there should be plenty in bloom over the next couple weeks. It will be a great time to get out and explore all the beautiful natural areas Southern Indiana has to offer.