At about this same time last year we noticed streams of butterflies flying southward along the beach and through our town. These butterflies seemed to be on some sort of migration as they flew in groups of three and four fluttering southward dodging buildings and other obstacles, but rarely stopping and never deviating from their course.
We did a bit of research and learned that in addition to the great monarch butterfly migration in North America several other butterfly species have annual migrations in South America sometimes from as far as Central America to the tip of Chile.
Last year I did not get pictures of these migrating butterflies, but this year I got lucky and found one who apparently got tired enough to rest for a bit on the screen of our patio sliding door.
As these butterflies fly by in the air they seem to be simple brown flecks. Although they are not the largest nor the most ornate of the butterflies we have seen here in San Clemente, they are still quite pretty when they open their wings for view. The problem with this one who finally sat still long enough for me to photograph was that he or she seemed determined to keep his wings closed.
I coaxed the little guy onto a broom handle in the hopes that I could get him to open his wings for examination.
I did get this close-up of the head while the butterfly was on the handle.
The butterfly then hopped off onto a hanging hammock swing we have on the patio and opened up his wings for view.
Both the right and left wings show some signs of wear from the migration, but still retain most of their beauty and characteristics.
It is almost impossible to get good pictures of these butterflies in flight, but I did try to take a few video clips while riding my bicycle northbound into the oncoming southbound butterflies.
My neighbors are used to me roving around town with my camera, so this guy only chuckled when he saw me passing trying to get pictures of the passing mariposas.
Although these particular butterflies will soon move on out of our area, others stay to visit our flowers and enrich our lives all year here in our new home.
Life is good in Ecuador.