Sawmill Campground, June 2005
This year I made several trips to Sawmill Mt. and campground in the Angeles National
Forest. Late June through Early August are peak times for leps at this site. The
first trip was exploratory to see how the season was progressing. It turned-out
to be a bit early, but things were looking pretty good for the upcoming weeks.
View of the Antelope Valley from Sawmill Ridge on 6-8-2005...
A bit more than a week later on 6-17-2005, another trip to Sawmill was hampered by
fog, low clouds, high winds and low temperatures. Oddly, the clouds were flying by
so low overhead that the tree tops were "scraping" them and causing condensation
to form on the branches which resulted in raindrops falling only under the trees!
Open areas around the trees were dry.
Normally the weather would be sunny and 80 to 90 degrees with light winds.
S. callippe macaria and Colias eurydice would be fresh and starting to fly in
numbers. In spite of the weather, a few spots on the mountain were
sheltered from the wind and subject to short periods of sunny breaks in
the cloud cover long enough to allow leps to fly every now and then. Male Macaria
Frits were fresh. Lindsay's skippers and Lupine Blues were still flying too.
While waiting for the sky to clear, I searched some low-growing
mistletoe in hopes of finding Great Purple Hairstreak larvae, and
instead found a bird dropping that provided a classic example of cryptic
larval mimicry coloration. For comparison, the 1st instar larva of Papilio