Butterflies August 03, 2015 20:47 - Michael Joslin

Butterflies have returned to Buladean with the hot days of summer.  While in the cool mornings turk's cap lilies, milkweed, and bee balm drip dew without butterflies there to sip, when the sun warms the flowers and their scents fill the air, swallowtails, fritillaries, and other winged wonders flutter and flit from plant to plant sipping nectar. 

Sometimes one plant attracts several of the same species, sometimes several different species.  The busy insects a never still; either they are flying or hovering, or the hungry butterfly's long proboscis probes for nectar, juice seeping from fruit, or water.

The combined beauty of the blossoms and the butterflies provides one of summer's most rewarding sights. Everyone with a camera pulls it out when the butterflies appear

To photography butterflies, you can use a wide variety of lenses and techniques.  A telephoto lens allows you to keep some distance between you and your subject so that you do not disturb the busy insect.  You need a high shutter speed to capture the butterfly without blur, or you can use a flash which should stop motion. 

A macro lens, particularly 100mm or more, allows you to get extreme closeups, but typically for these to work out, you will need a flash.

Even a wide angle or normal lens can render the scene in a memorable way. As long as the butterfly is distinct, capturing its place among the other wonders of the season rewards your efforts.

Butterflies have symbolized metamorphosis and the soul for many cultures. They teach a lesson beginning with their transformation from a crawling caterpillar to a light floating wisp.  Their intrinsic beauty that escapes earth's bonds reminds us of the spirit that carries us through life.

Take time to enjoy the spectacle of flower and butterfly.  It is the season.