North American Butterfly Association
Mercer County Park; Power Lines near Lake
Mercer County, NJ
The weather was sunny with a constant breeze and about 80º F at 4:30 pm when I arrived. The eastern side of the power lines had adequate sun for butterflies, but the western side was already in the shade. The ground was somewhat damp from recent rains, but not muddy. There was an abundance of flowering garlic mustard, which is a favorite nectar source for the particular population of Falcate Orangetips that frequent this area, though their host plant in this area is Hairy Rock Cress. This population has proven to be fairly stable over the past decade that I have been observing them. The coincidence of Garlic mustard in bloom increases the number of sightings (especially of males), as there are more instances of nectaring. The Garlic mustard bloomed after the peak of the Falcate Orangetips for the past two years here, which might help to explain fewer sightings in this particular population.
About the sightings pages
© 2019 North American Butterfly Association.