WILDLIFE PHOTOGRAPHY – BIG CYPRESS WMA, FL
Photograph of a Red-banded Hairstreak butterfly taken on the L-28 Levee north of Alligator Alley (I-75) in the Big Cypress Swamp . The camera gear used was a Nikon D90 camera body with a Nikkor 60mm 2.8 lens and a Tamron 2x teleconverter. This photo actually took close to an hour to shoot as the little bugger just wouldn’t land and pose for the camera, yet said to be easy to approach and observe!
The Red-banded Hairstreak butterfly (Calycopis cecrops) is easily identified by its bright reddish stripes on the underside of the hindwings. The red-banded hairstreak is a common resident of the southeastern United States, and is often seen in large numbers on small-flowered plants, and is a frequent visitor to gardens. The red-banded hairstreak slowly moves its hindwings up and down while feeding or at rest. This behavior, which is typical of most hairstreaks, draws a predator’s attention toward the antennae-like tails and away from the butterfly’s true head.
Habitat: Open, shrubby locations and forest edges
Wingspan: 0.75 to 1.0in