Since both my husband and I enjoy photography, we celebrated Valentine’s by registering for a special after-hours photography session at Tucson Botanical Gardens.
This event allowed only five photographers admission to the tropical Butterfly Magic exhibit with all our equipment—cameras, lights, tripods, and so on. It was a wonderful opportunity for us to take our time without bothering other people with our gear or, to be honest, worrying about other visitors getting in our way.
The following are just a few of the hundreds of photos I took.
Tiger Longwing (Heliconius hecale). Range: Mexico to the Peruvian Amazon.
Ruby-spotted Swallowtail (Papilio anchisiades). Range: south Texas south to Argentina.
Julia Longwing (Dryas Julia). Range: southern areas of the U.S.
Zebra Longwing (Heliconius charithonia). Range: extreme southern portions of the United States southward through Mexico, Central America and the West Indies to South America.
Atlas (Attacus atlas). Range: Southeast Asia.
This Atlas moth was a unique visitor to the exhibit. According to the Houston Museum of Natural Science, the Atlas belongs to the giant silk moths family, Saturniidae. Wikipedia cites a moth as “an insect closely related to the butterfly, both being of the order Lepidoptera”.