One of the most popular annual displays at the Cincinnati Krohn Conservatory is their Butterfly Exhibit. Past years have included Butterfly displays from Madagascar, the Caribbean, and the Philippines, just to name a few. Finally this year I made it in time to spend a very enjoyable evening photographing specimens from South America.
Butterflies are rather challenging to photograph because of their flitting ways! Just as you are about to press the shutter button, flit, and they are on their way to the next flower or leaf.
Besides being so colorful and full of varying and intriguing markings, some specimens show completely different markings on the outside of their wings as compared to the inside!
The Blue Morpho is one such butterfly, and he likes to keep his wings together while resting, so that beautiful pale blue is hidden. Suddenly there is a flash of blue as he lifts into the air, and the chase is on! Those little fellows almost wore me out trying to get a few photographs of their wings spread open, but I prevailed and finally caught a few shots.
The butterflies were not shy about landing on people either! One young lady’s hair seem to be of particular interest, and another butterfly landed on my friend’s shirt. Both butterflies were thoughtful enough to hang around and allow me to take a few photos – perhaps they were “mugging” for the camera?! In fact, the more I study the pictures, the more I think it is the same butterfly. Talk about a ham!
While there is no substitute for capturing those serendipitous butterfly moments out in nature, the ability to see and enjoy such a wide variety of species under one roof is quite a treat. I highly recommend a visit to the Conservatory if you happen to be in town late spring/early summer, you will not be disappointed! – Robert