Jordan Lake, 04/30/2021. It was very windy at the lake. This male eastern tiger swallowtail is puddling. The males sip the salts and minerals from the moist sands – sometimes where there are bird droppings and sometimes where there is simply enough standing / puddled moisture to allow the butterflies to sip. The salts and minerals help the male to be more successful in his reproductive activities. The wind would knock the swallowtail off the puddle but he would quickly circle back for another sip. Sometimes you will see several of these butterflies getting their nutrients all in a group.
Captain Doug and I were on the lake, checking bald eagle nests and enjoying the beautiful autumn day. We came upon a small flock of common loons who were also enjoying the warmth. Loons are winter visitors here and their lovely calls can be heard in the early mornings and late evenings. Captain Doug tried to ease in front of the loons so I could get some face shots, but, the loons easily grouped, turned direction and then lined out and left us behind. They are fast swimmers and they left me and the little iPhone behind a couple of times too!