A visit to Long Key Nature Center
American beautyberries have been in abundance in the oak hammock at Long Key Nature Center. Perhaps the berries are nature's way of balancing out some of the ugliness that is now emerging in our world on a daily basis. A note to Mother Nature: More beautyberries needed.
There are also an increasing number of cootie plants at Long Key ... and where there are coonties, there are Atala butterflies. I bought coontie seeds by mail a few years ago and planted them in my garden for the Atalas. One plant made it but it's still only 3-4 inches tall. I've never seen anything grow so slowly. Perhaps one day an Atala will visit.
A chrysalis I spotted in the ephemeral wetland habitat at Long Key. I always love walking through there, as I sometimes spot insects I have never before seen.