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Summer Solstice

Posted Friday, June 18, 2021
Naturalist’s Journal

A Canadian Tiger Swallowtail on an Orange Hawkweed plant.


Noun. the study of cyclic and seasonal natural phenomena, especially in relation to climate and plant and animal life

It is amazing to think that Spring has sprung out. This Sunday (6/20) will be the Summer Solstice, marking the longest day of the year and the end of spring. What a busy spring it has been! The landscape is filled with greenery and life once again, and with it our freedom to explore the outdoors. For those who have not had the opportunity to get outside yet this summer I would highly recommend getting out there! It has been wonderful to see the forest bound back to life and see the familiar bright colors of wildflowers dot the landscape. Orange Hawkweed (Hieracium aurantiacum), Oxeye Daisy (Leucanthemum vulgare), and the tame Peony (Paeonia officinalis) have shared their beauty with us this year. 

It is the perfect time of year to explore the higher elevations as the trails dry out and the animals of the forest return to their busy schedules. I was lucky enough to see a few Canadian Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio canadensis) on my exploration of Sterling Forest the other day. These butterflies love water and are known to hang out around puddles. They also utilize birch, poplars, and black cherry trees to nest and feed their young. Can you spot any Canadian Tiger Swallowtails this weekend? 

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