(First published in 2011):
On my last trip out to the Prairie Meadow to check out the wildflower/wildlife activity, I came upon this cute little guy, who I first thought was a bumble bee. But as I approached it, I could tell it was definitely not a bumbler … I had found my first of year (FOY) Clearwing Moth! Here are a few images I made:
As you can see, he was not on a flower collecting nectar, but was content with holding onto some dead foliage from last season’s prairie plants. In fact, there is very little flowers in bloom on the prairie at this time. Missouri has had a very wet and cold “spring”, so the prairie wildflowers are behind their normal blooming schedule. I guess this guy came in and, with little nectar sources, decided just to stay in one place and conserve energy. But I’m sure I will see more of these beauties on the prairie as summer approaches and the meadow becomes filled with the splendor of wildflowers bursting with colors!