Wee Wildlife @ Xandari

I came back from Xandari this morning late and I’m still processing photos from there, including some made this morning before leaving. right now it looks like I photographed 15 species of butterflies, 10 species of birds and 4 other wildlife, 3 of which I am sharing here as other insect . . .

Leafcutter Ant, Xandari Resort, Alajuela, Alajuela
— Click above image to see my Leafcutter Ants Gallery
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Mystical Cloudless Sulphur

For some reason, most of the big Yellows have been flying around up in the trees here and not down on the ground like other butterflies! 🙂 And of course there’s a natural explanation for every such phenomenon! I just don’t know it! 🙂

But the other day this female Cloudless Sulphur spent some time on the flowers in my garden and here are three fave photos from that experience. This first one below is where she looks like a fairy to me! 🙂 The second shot of her open wings is also the feature photo at top of this post online and it is interesting to note that only the females sometimes have those two brown spots on top of the wings. And the last photo is the most typical photo of a Cloudless Sulphur, showing a folded-wings side-view with the two prominent, imperfect double-white-circles used to identify a Cloudless Sulphur. No other Yellow has that! 🙂

Cloudless Sulphur female, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica
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Rounded Metalmark

The Rounded Metalmark, Calephelis perditalis (my gallery link) is a tiny butterfly that has been a regular in my garden in the past, though this was the first one I’ve photographed since February, as we have entered a new greener rainy season. It is found from Central Texas south through Mexico & Central America. Just one photo here. See more in my above linked gallery or see what the Texas ones look like on butterfliesandmoths. 🙂

Rounded Metalmark, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica

¡Pura Vida!

I’m scheduled to go to Xandari Resort in Alajuela tomorrow for just 2 nights and it has been one of my best butterfly places, so there may be a lot more different ones coming from there soon! 🙂

Yellow-rimmed Skipper

The Yellow-rimmed Skipper, Aethilla lavochrea (my gallery link where I have more photos from other sightings) is found from Mexico through Central America to Columbia, thus a mostly Central American butterfly and Costa Rica is central in it’s range. Evidently not many people are seeing and photographing this species, since most websites that even include it, have only 1 or 2 photos. Plus at butterfliesandmoths dot org all the photos are mine except for 1. 🙂 Here’s 3 photos from this April 2024 sighting . . .

Yellow-rimmed Skipper, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica
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Tropical Checkered Skipper

The Tropical Checkered Skipper, Burnsius oileus, (my gallery link) is another fairly common butterfly in the past that has returned to my garden for this year. Here’s just one shot and you can see more in the above linked gallery. They are found along the U.S. Gulf Coast south to Argentina. See photos from other places on butterfliesandmoths.

Tropical Checkered Skipper, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica

¡Pura Vida!

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Cassius Blue

Another one of those tiny little butterflies and the second time for me to see the Cassius Blue, Leptotes cassius (my gallery link), both times this year! I keep being surprised with new species and during a year with an extra hot and windy pre-rainy season! But fortunately, the rainy season has started and my garden is happy! Along with the birds and butterflies! 🙂 And here’s 3 shots of the Cassius Blue with different light, shading and details . . .

Cassius Blue, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica
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Wildflowers or Weeds?

All of these are tiny that have just popped up between my planted flowers or even in the grass that wasn’t cut by the weedeaters. They all attract butterflies and I think some of them are beautiful in their own simple ways. Below, after one shot, is a gallery of 6 different species.

Wildflower or Weed Flower? Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica
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2 Days of Butterflies

These 6 photos of 6 species were made on April 18 & 20, processed a week later and being ahead on my blog posts, they just now make it to you! 🙂 I was really photographing a lot during the weeks before my Arenal trip and now my photos and thus blog posts are sort of backed up. But I will catch up and maybe slow down a little or be more selective in which photos I share. Sorry, but I want to share all of them! 🙂 I will put these 6 butterflies in a little gallery below this one introductory shot.

Dina Yellow, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica
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Lirio Caminante, Trimezia gracilis

Thanks to one of the volunteers on iNaturalist, I now have a species name for that “cute smiling” flower I photographed at Arenal last month. The scientific name is Trimezia gracilis and the most used common name is Liro Caminante, with a less-used common name of Falsa Orquidea. You can see a map of where they are found around the world and read more information about them on PlantNet.org. Here’s that one photo again and I’m proud to be first to share it on iNaturalist! 🙂

Lirio Caminante, Trimezia gracilis, at Arenal Observatory Lodge & Trails, Costa Rica.

¡Pura Vida!