Saturday was the Monarch Butterfly Festival at St. Marks. We have yet to go to the festival as we prefer to go when the crowds are not there. We went down on Sunday. Our older son and his toddler son went with us. The butterflies are rarely on schedule for the festival, but this year they came in with a cool front and were there on the coast by the thousand, if not the million I named in the title of this post.
I counted fifty individuals and estimated the rest and came up with 400 that we saw. They are feeding on the sweet nectar of the blooming saltbush that grows along the dikes.
They have come hundreds of miles already and will fly across the Gulf to Mexico; their progeny will return in the spring, though not as dramatically as the fall. Their numbers in the spring are hardly noticeable.
I spent my time Sunday enjoying our grandson instead of trying to get the perfect butterfly picture. The pictures below were taken a couple of Octobers ago.