Sarasota News Leader

05/16/2014

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Editor's note: This is the author's second article in a series about the many creatures found in Florida. I am in Brooklyn at my daughter's apartment, sitting by a window overlooking the garden. A Monarch butterfly floats by. I grab my cam- era and rush down the stairs. In Florida, all the world's a butterfly garden. The state's north/south orientation — more temperate in the north, subtropical in the south — attracts a wide variety of Lepidoptera, the group that includes butterflies and moths. Marc and Maria Minno in their wonderful book Florida Butterfly Gardening list 164 species of butterflies that breed in Florida. It has to be a dark rainy day not to see at least one. Usually, I run into a dozen when I am out hiking. A Swallowtail swoops past, most likely a male in search of a mate. At a more leisurely pace, Zebra Longwings nectar on wildflowers. Tiny Satyrs and Skippers flutter at my feet. Native plant nurseries are Meccas for but- terflies. They are around all year at Florida Native Plants in Sarasota. At Sweet Bay Nursery in Parrish, Tom Heitzman sees Monarch in Brooklyn 'B' IS FOR BUTTERFLIES LEPIDOPTERA MAY BE A COMMON SIGHT, BUT YOU CAN DO MORE TO ATTRACT THEM Story and Photos By Fran Palmeri Contributing Writer IS FOR BUTTERFLY B All The Rest ...

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