The cooling air sweeps through the old hay field gently rocking the tall purple ironweed. It’s little harder to pick up the sweet smell of the bloom on cooler, dryer days but it’s still there. The older pipevine Swallowtail has no difficulty at all in finding her favorite meal as as she softly floats in on the breeze. Her battered wings and loss of dark scales tells me that her journey is nearly over. She’s already deposited her eggs on the pipevine in faith that her multiple broods will emerge in Spring and fill the hills with vibrant colors and joyful airial dances. With profound contentment she feeds. The fluttering of wings reminds me of a puppy wagging it’s tail as I watch through the lens of my camera. The window of my big blue truck provides the perfect cover to enjoy her beautiful routine as she explores each floret in the cluster. She seems to have no fear of me. Even though I’m using the long lens I was able to get close enough that I had to physically back away in order to focus.
With grace she works her way around the bloom lifts herself into the air. Before she departed to her next goal she flew so close to the truck window that I thought she come inside. At the last second she pulled up and circled hood a few times as if saying goodbye before riding the breeze to the far side of the pasture. Perhaps in Spring her children will also pay me a visit.
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