I'll start with the big one. Andrews' Bog Orchid is a hybrid orchid that's been present on our Black Hole Preserve since at least 2017, when Rob Routledge, professor at Sault College, found it. I finally had the opportunity to see it myself this week. There are only a handful of other known records of this hybrid in North America, making this a pretty rare and significant plant to have on a TKC preserve. We are sure excited about it! There were actually four plants of this growing at this location, three of them were fairly small and one was fairly large in comparison. I hope that this hybrid will continue to thrive here for years to come!
Andrews' Bog Orchid hybrid between Lesser Purple Fringed Orchid and Ragged Fringed Orchid, both of which are present on the Black Hole Preserve. We actually looked for the Ragged Fringed Orchid during the same visit, but could not find it. We're guessing we just missed it though! My virtual tour last week showed the Lesser Purple Fringed Orchid, although it wasn't in full bloom yet.
The meadow on the Boyer Preserve, just behind The Kensington Conservation Centre, is full of blooming flowers right now, attracting a wide variety of insects. I recorded 11 species of butterflies this week here: Northern Crescent (photo to the left), European Skipper, Long Dash, Dun Skipper, Least Skipper, Eastern Comma, Silvery Blue, Common Ringlet, White Admiral, Monarch, and Cabbage White. There were also a number of drangonflies, moths, bumble bees and other insects, but they are not all easy to photograph! Below are some more photos, each one with a caption saying what they are.
I highly recommend signing up for iNaturalist and submitting your own sightings. The data that is collected from the community this way is invaluable and really helps us know what is being seen in our area! If you ever have any questions about iNaturalist, feel free to get in touch with me, I'm happy to help.
I hope you enjoyed the photos!