Wednesday, June 19, 2013
The Nuts and Bolts of Butterfly Identification (Photo Essay)
This butterfly is a Polygonia c-aureum or, Asia Comma.
In Okinawa, Japan where the photos were taken, it's a Kitateha (キタテハ).
Here's where the nuts and bolts idea came from.
The only place this guy would hold still for 1/640th of a second was here.
It's important to get photos, from as many angles as possible, to help with the ID.
The antennae, nose, eyes, legs, inside and outside marks on wings, all tell you something.
So, even when he turns his back on me, I keep shooting.
Once all the photos are processed, the search is on.
Butterflies of Japan is the first place, I look. If the photo was taken in Hawaii, I'd look at their site.
It might take, scrolling through a thousand thumbnails, to come up with an identification.
Once a scientific name is discovered a lot more research gets done.
Education and government websites are the most reliable references, I think.
Before I post a new critter's name online, it has to be verified or, I won't do it.
Now, you know the nuts and bolts, of how I would ID a butterfly.
It isn't all that easy, you know.
It could drive a man to drinking.