Charleston Butterfly Blitz 2022
Charleston Butterfly Blitz 2022 was great! Fifty-one participants submitted almost 1400 butterfly photos of 47 different species to iNaturalist from Coles County from July 23rd to July 31st. The 47 species is the highest total we have had in our 4 years of the Blitz. Congratulations and thanks to everyone who participated!
For the first time, monarchs were not the most submitted species. Instead, they came in 6th, with spicebush swallowtails taking the top spot. Overall, swallowtails had a strong showing, with pipevine swallowtails being 5th (after coming in 23rd in 2021), eastern tiger swallowtails coming in 10th, and eastern giant swallowtails being 12th.
Common buckeyes were one of the most common submissions (4th) after numbers had been way down in 2021 (37th with only 4 submissions, compared to 83 submissions this year). Painted ladies were present (after no submissions at all last year) but did not come close to their top 10 standing from 2019 and 2020, coming in 19th with 24 submissions. Variegated fritillaries and viceroys were also more commonly submitted this year. Orange sulphurs, in contrast, were relatively uncommon this year, coming in 14th after being in the top 10 for the previous 2 years. Tracking these trends from year to year is one of the main scientific benefits of the Blitz.
All participants in the Charleston Butterfly Blitz 2022 qualified for 10% off any (single) in-stock accessory at Bike & Hike-Charleston in August 2022. Winners of overall prizes for number of species and submissions were Annalisa Switzer, Marge Phelps, Brett Spengler, Kaila Scurek, and Joanna Key.