Butterflies at Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge

I had the pleasure of visiting the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma back in July. As a Wildlife Photographer, I always keep my camera handy to capture the diverse animals and insects I encounter on my hikes. During my walk through the refuge on July 22, I was lucky enough to photograph a beautiful Red Admiral butterfly. The next day, on July 23, I photographed a Pearl Crescent butterfly.

Red Admiral Butterfly
Red Admiral Butterfly
Pearl Crescent Butterfly
Pearl Crescent Butterfly

When I got home, I realized I wasn’t confident about the identification of the butterflies. I sent the photos to my friend Mia, a fellow wildlife photographer with a good knowledge of butterflies, for help. She quickly replied that one was a Red Admiral and the other was a Pearl Crescent butterfly. With the IDs confirmed, I did some research on both species to include in this blog post.

The Red Admiral I photographed on July 22 had distinctive orange, white and black wing patterns. These widespread butterflies are found throughout North America and can be seen from spring to fall in multiple broods. The caterpillars feed on the leaves of nettles and false nettles. Adults get nectar from a variety of flowers including asters, milkweed and rotten fruit.

The Pearl Crescent I captured on July 23 is also a common sight. These butterflies have black and orange wings with a distinctive white crescent shape on the hindwing. They are found widely across eastern North America. The caterpillars feed solely on asters, while the adults get nectar from flowers like milkweed, aster, and red clover.

I’m so glad I was able to get Mia’s help identifying these two beautiful butterfly species found at the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge. As a Wildlife Photographer, it’s been a great learning experience for me. I’m looking forward to heading back to try and capture some more of the incredible diversity of insects found there.

Until next time, keep exploring and cherishing the beauty of the wild!

Steve Creek Wildlife Photographer

Equipment Used:

  • Camera: Canon EOS R5
  • Lens: Canon RF 100-500 mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM

Technical Details: First Photo

  • Location: Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge (Oklahoma)
  • Date and Time Taken: July 22, 2023 (07:33A. M.)
  • Exposure Mode: Manual
  • Aperture: f10
  • Shutter speed: 1/800
  • ISO: 2500 (Auto)
  • Exp. Comp.: 0
  • Focal Length: 500 mm

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