Mid-summer brings more experiences with the natural world

As July advances, there’s plenty to experience with our friends with wings. It’s also good to remember not all those wings have feathers. Summer is a great time to observe a variety of interesting winged insects, including moths, butterflies, dragonflies and damselflies.


Photos by Bryan Stevens                A pair of Mallard drakes strike a pose along the walking trail through a wetlands in Erwin, TN. Mallard males lose their shiny green heads during the summer months, making them look quite different from the ducks we are used to seeing during the winter and spring.


A Carolina Saddlebags perches at a fish pond in Hampton, TN. This dragonfly, like many species of birds, is known to migrate.



A Mourning Dove stretches it wing while perched at a feeder.


The Eastern Amberwing, one of our smaller dragonflies, begins to emerge in July. Don’t let this photo fool you. While it may look interested in munching on this plant, all dragonflies are predators, capturing and devouring other insects. They’re harmless to humans, however.


An Ebony Jewelwing perches on a branch above the water’s surface. Beneath the surface, a dace swims past the damselfly’s shadow.


Many summer flowers are in bloom. This gladiola attracts a Silver-spotted Skimmer.


Some of the larger moths, such as this Polyphemus Moth, fly during the height of the summer season.


A Gray Catbird perches on a water bottle atop a garden post.


A male Northern Cardinal visits a feeder for some sunflower seeds during a break from feeding young.


A Ruby-throated Hummingbird visits a feeder for a sip of sugar water. Summer also brings an abundance of natural nectar from various flowers.

Summer is a great time to get outside, enjoy the sunshine and let nature entertain and enlighten you. Enjoy!






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