Spring Identification – Hard to ID species

With spring approaching, it’s getting to be time for the butterflies and odonata (dragonflies and damselflies) to come out to play. My region – the NJ-DE-PA tri-state area – is a great place for both types of insects, but there are many species that are tough to tell apart unless you know what to look for. I’ve put together some ID lessons to help people identify some of the commonly confused species. I’ll try to keep this up at a decent pace so that I get all of these out over the next couple weeks, but no promises with my schedule as of late. Here’s the plan:

Part I: Butterflies
1.1 – Polygonia species
1.2 – Sulphurs
1.3 – Monarch & Viceroy
1.4 – Hairstreaks
Part II: Odonata
2.1 – Common Whitetails
2.2 – 12-Spotted Skimmers
2.3 – Common Whitetails vs. 12-Spotted Skimmers
2.4 – 4-Spotted Pennants
Part III: Birds (Bonus round!)
3.1 – Greater vs. Lesser Yellowlegs
3.2 – Terns of NJ
3.3 – Hawks and Falcons
3.4 – Sparrows
3.5 – Super Secret ID Quiz

Like I said, I’ll try to get one of these up every day or so, so keep checking back.


2 Responses to “Spring Identification – Hard to ID species

  • This is such a cool idea. I like the photos illustrating the differences between the species. You could write a book with stuff like this! I’m sure these guides will come in handy for me, as I am always seeing things and wondering what they are.

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