I am a new user, and find TX-BUTTERFLY very interesting.
Someone asked if the Black Witch sightings were typical or not, and is
there a local breeding population. I cannot give a definitive answer to the
question, but will simply share my experience.
I have lived in Harris County for more than fifty years (I'm not going to
say how much more). As a kid, I was very interested in butterflies and
moths. I spent a lot of time outdoors, and I collected them. And then, for
many years, butterflies & moths took a back seat to lots of other things,
but I still spent a lot of time outdoors.
I never saw a Black Witch until September 21, 1998, when I saw one in
Baytown. Of course I didn't see everything, but you would think I would
have seen one occasionally if they were very common.
I didn't see my second BW until this year. I had some plum trees that
dropped some of their fruit, and it was on the ground. On 6-8-01, I checked
the plums trees to see if I could find some plums that were still good. And
there, feasting on a rotting plum, was a Black Witch. And then I saw
another. And another. And another! Four of them! I certainly hope that
"La Diabla" doesn't bring bad luck! (The story about the Mexican cab driver
The next day, June 9, my husband saw one in Liberty County. I saw my last
one June 14.
I wonder if Tropical Storm Allison had anything to do with their abundance?
They are interesting, and they certainly can startle a person under the
right circumstances. My husband went to check the oil in his truck, and as
he raised the hood, a Black Witch fluttered, bat-like, right up in his face.
Nearly made him hurt himself!
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