This blog provides an informal forum for terrestrial invertebrate watchers to post recent sightings of interesting observations in the southern Vancouver Island region. Please send your sightings by email to Jeremy Tatum ( Be sure to include your name, phone number, the species name (common or scientific) of the invertebrate you saw, location, date, and number of individuals. If you have a photograph you are willing to share, please send it along. Click on the title above for an index of past sightings.The index is updated most days.

March 21 evening

2020 March 21 evening


   Gordon Hart writes:   We got home from a walk in the early afternoon, March 20, and a Satyr Comma was on the Heather.  And  I finally photographed a California Tortoiseshell on some Pieris.   [Jeremy Tatum remarks:  In case anyone is wondering, Gordon is referring to a common garden shrub (Ericaceae) which bears the genus name Pieris – not closely related to the Cabbage White butterfly, which is also Pieris!]


Jeff Gaskin writes:  March 20, Kirsten Mills and I found no fewer than 3 California Tortoiseshells by the concrete reservoir on Mount Tolmie, and there may even have been 4 there.


Ron Flower writes:  today Saturday 21st. we went to the Goldstream River around noon and saw 4 individual commas. I think Satyr but not sure.  Jeremy Tatum writes:  I’m not sure either!   I’ll label them just comma for the moment, but I’ll try and be more definite tomorrow (March 22).  Ron continues:  We also saw two Mourning Cloaks there.

Added on March 22:  Gordon Hart writes, concerning the commas: They are rather hard to tell, but I think they are satyrus. Green Commas are smaller and darker overall, so often a bit easier to distinguish in life. Even though the light spots are on the dark marginal band, they are usually darker and more distinct in P. faunus.


Comma Polygonia (probably satyrus).  (Lep.: Nymphalidae)  Ron Flower

Comma Polygonia (probably satyrus)  (Lep.: Nymphalidae)  Ron Flower

Mourning Cloak Nymphalis antiopa (Lep.: Nymphalidae)  Ron Flower

   Jeremy Tatum writes:  Today I went to Swan Lake, Blenkinsop Lake and Mount Tolmie, and I still haven’t seen my first butterfly of the year!