In Cuba I have seen once thousands and thousands of Protographium celadon(but all already damaged) and in a forest I found them in the shade on the next early morning sleeping in groups of 20-50 piece......... Robert
I saw a few times such a sight with P. glaucus, troilus, and blues where a creekbed goes from a cattle field under a bridge in TN. Beetlehorn and I visit there every time I'm in TN. He gets to see them whenever he wants........that lucky goon.
"Puddling", as these are dong, is quite common in many families of Lepidoptera, whether it be in a riparian habitat like this one, or in any other habitat, including true deserts. Have observed it hundreds of times since 1964 when I first started doing serious field work with Lepidoptera, and in many countries.
These "swarms" pale in comparison to hill topping I've seen in many locations, many of the annual migrations I've seen, and at places where millions of leps from hundreds of species all fly together every day in season.
With the arctic/alpine habitats being one of my favorites, almost any outcrop, point, etc near the top of hills/mountains or other features (even rock piles or "bumps" in tundra) will have several species hill topping and in fairly high numbers.
We just had the Vanessa migrants fly through here (Las Vegas) heading north to recolonize all the way to Canada. Mostly V. cardui, but also some V. carye/annabella and V. virginiensis mixed in. They came through for a solid month here (all of March) with at least several hundred per day passing through my small patch of the valley. When I lived about 500 miles north of here on the west slope of the Rockies some years they arrived in such high numbers there that they blanketed the ground, plants and anything else to rest on for days on end, and sometimes for up to a couple of weeks. One particular year when they were almost blotting out the sun we jumped in the truck and headed west just to see how wide the steady migration was. We drove almost 300 miles to Battle Mountain and never got to the other side of the migration, and there were almost as many there as those funneled along the Rockies.
The Beartooth Plateau is an example of a place where you can see millions of butterflies on the wing in summer anytime the sun is out. With 170 species of Rhopalocera alone, dozens of various species are on the wing there during the entire short season that high. We spent 3 summers camped up there above 10,000' in our RV and reared thousands of leps.
I was out on Isle Royale in June a few years ago. I wish I would have had a camera and don't know if it occurs every year, but there were thousands of Canadian tiger swallowtails puddling on one of the beaches we were on.
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