Of winged flowers and transformation

The butterfly counts not months,
but in moments and has time enough. ~Author Unknown~

The Conservatory of Flowers in Golden Gate Park has a lovely exhibit of called Butterflies and Blooms. The exhibit will run until October 20, 2013.

Yesterday, we made the first of several trips to see the butterflies.

Julia Heliconian
Julia Heliconian by Lastech

Zebra Longwing
Zebra Longwing by Lastech

The exhibit is a pretty neat way of welcoming a long awaited Spring, which also coincides with Titanescu’s birthday. Well, his “scientific” estimate of a birthday anyway.

Zebra Longwing
The underside of a Zebra Longwing by Rudha-an

Marshal Titanescu, Герой Советского Союза, well into retirement after a lifetime of service of the people followed by twenty (cat) years in the Gulag, would probably not be bothered by butterflies alighting on his Hero’s cranium or arthritic haunches.

He’d sleep through that.

Cabbage White and Zebra Longwing
Cabbage White and Zebra Longwing by Rudha-an
Zebra Longwing
Zebra Longwing by Rudha-an

Tito and Jenny are another matter, but neither was there to wreck the exhibit room in carnivorous pursuits.

Monarch on a fountain by Rudha-an

The Butterflies exhibit is housed in the West wing of the Conservatory, where most exhibits are set up. You enter in the same way as you enter a server room, through heavy clear plastic curtains.

When ready to leave, it is best to have someone check that you have not picked up any hitch hikers, as Butterflies will sometimes settle on you…

Queen on purple flower by Rudha-an

Suspended netting is strung along the rafters to keep the Butterflies from disappearing into inaccessible recesses. There are many species of flowers, as well as water sources for the Butterflies’ sustenance and visitors’ viewing pleasure.

Julia Heliconian
Photo by Lastech
I am the Batman by Lastech

The air is noticeably warm and humid but circulates adequately for maybe a dozen people. It’s best to pace yourself through the room as Butterflies will sometimes land on the most succulent visitors…

Common Buckeye
It thought she was a shrub by Lastech
Queen Butterfly on Rudha-an’s shoe

Ah. The sweet nectar of shoe leather…

Common Buckeye
Common Buckeye by Lastech

Most of the Butterflies were very accomodating models, remaining still long enough to take several shots with a variety of settings. This one above is a close up, the Butterfly was well up high on the netting by the ceiling.

Julia Heliconian
Julia’s feast by Lastech

The next few photos show them in various stages of nourishment and need no commentary, until we get to…. Wait for it…

Cabbage White
Cabbage White by Lastech

… Wait for it…

Julia Heliconian
Julia Heliconian by Rudha-an

… Wait for it…

Giant Cloudless Sulphur
Giant Cloudless Sulphur on gazania by Rudha-an

… Almost there…

Julia Heliconian
Julia Heliconian

…. Yes. Butterfly pr0n!

Mating Monarchs
Mating Monarchs by Lastech

As I said, it was warm in there, and then it got hot… These two were doing “the beast with four wings” while humming some Al Green…

Julia Heliconian
Mating Julia Heliconians by Lastech

.. And others were probably fantasizing of a little inter-species Ooo-la-la…

z cat and butterfly

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