Southeast Ohio has been stuck in the deep freeze for over a month now. However, a warm spell is a comin'! In Intellicast's ten-day forecast, high temperatures are expected to stay above 45 degrees, with a few days approaching 60 degrees. Great news for butterfly wings and the cold aching bones of butterfly hunters.
Ohio has several butterfly species that overwinter as adults, including the mourning cloak, the comma, and the question mark. These butterflies find shelter behind peeling bark and in dense brush and rock piles. On warm days these butterflies will sneak away from frigid enclosures to bask in the warm sun. This winter, these sturdy insects have not had many opportunities to crawl out and do some sun bathing.
However, with the warm spell approaching, sunny days will provide ideal conditions for these stalwarts to catch some rays. As you take the opportunity to go hiking or work in the yard, keep an eye out on fallen logs, standing trees, or berry bushes exposed to the bright sunshine. Chances are good that one of our winged friends will also be claiming a spot on the log as well.
As you develop your butterfly garden, remember to provide sunny perching spots for butterflies. Fallen logs and large boulders can be provide these sunning sites. Also remember to provide shelter from the cold for butterflies. Create a brush or rock pile at the edge of the yard. Do not always cut down the dead trees in your woods.
Enjoy the coming warmth with our winged friends!