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.

Jordan Lake Dam, Haw River: Usually, when I sit down to edit my day’s photo shoot, I go chronologically. But this afternoon, I began at the end of the shoot so I could bring you my first eastern tiger swallowtail of this year. Please enjoy the sunny bright colors of the butterfly sipping nectar from the blooming redbud tree. Now, where was I … oh yes … on to the ospreys from this morning.

A hummingbird? Perhaps a songbird, duck or bald eagle? Natural focal points for your desk or your living room wall? Please wander through where you could get all your holiday shopping done. Maybe you would like to share some fine art with family and friends for the Holidays. In my gallery you can order a large variety of birds and landscapes as prints, framed wall art or desk art, or greeting cards! Thanks for your support and friendship, peace and grace, Doc Ellen

Jordan Lake, Haw River: Now that you have seen the pine warbler … look for his sleeping neighbor. Ah. The monarch butterfly sleeps under leaves or below branches where it is protected from predators and where it is somewhat warmer. You can see that the pine warbler is puffed up against this morning’s cold. The monarch hadn’t yet gotten enough sun warmth to be on the move. I don’t think the bird saw the butterfly and I doubt if the butterfly had yet sensed the bird. The bird moved on to feed and about 30 minutes later the monarch warmed up had headed for the butterfly bush to gather nectar.

Sometimes I am blessed and one the largest creatures of flight at the lake, a bald eagle, will come and perch above my shoulder and watch the world with me.  Sometimes, one of the smaller creatures, such as this dragonfly, will come and sit, weightless on my foot, and we too watch the world together.  Video was made on May 25, 2018, Jordan Lake.