Pipe Vine Swallowtail

Searching for good photographic subjects on Big Walker Mountain, I happened upon a group of these large, blue and black butterflies.  My friend James Shelton, who is quite the amateur entomologist, tells me this butterfly is a Pipe Vine Swallowtail.

Zabulon Skipper

photograph of a Zabulon Skipper butterflyWhile attempting to photograph some bumble bees at work I noticed this little skipper flitting among the wild flowers.  I’m not certain I’ve identified it correctly but I believe it is a Zabulon Skipper.

Robber Fly

macro photograph of a robber fly on a branchThis robber fly was lying in wait on a low branch in my yard.  Luckily I had my camera and tripod when I spotted it.  You can click on the picture to see a larger version of the image.

Butterfly At Work

Photograph of a blue and black butterfly moving on a flowerDuring a recent visit to the Big Walker Mountain Lookout tower, near Wytheville, VA, I noticed large blue and black winged butterflies busily gathering nectar from nearby flowers.  I had my camera on a slow ISO setting and the evening light was beginning to fade.  The resulting image of a blurred butterfly seemed appropriate to me since they seemed to never stop moving.

Dragonfly in Dry Grass

photograph of a green dragonfly in dry, brown grass

“Don’t walk through that tall grass,” my Uncle warned.  “It’s full of chiggers.”  I decided to go anyway; there were some lovely wildflowers I wanted to shoot and I’ve survived worse than a few chigger bites.  Two weeks later my ankles finally stopped itching.  The wildflower shots were okay but this dragonfly made the itching worth it.  If I didn’t know better I would sweat it’s actually smiling.