At every World Birding Center that I’ve visited in South Texas, the butterflies have been abundant. The Rio Grande Valley is not only a major butterfly migration route, but often times, specific wildflowers are planted to attract them to certain areas.

I’ve seen the majestic Monarchs and even one luminous and evasive Blue Morpho when we visited two years ago. There are always many that I’m not familiar with, but every time when I’ve searched my images, I’ve been able to ID them.

My feature photo is of a butterfly I saw recently at Edinburg Scenic Wetlands and World Birding Center. It’s the only one I’ve ever seen with this colour and these markings and it has eluded my identification.

It’s not a crisp photo because I was reaching above my head to get the shot, so I had lots of camera shake. In addition, I was unable to catch him with his wings unfurled.

I’ve looked at hundreds of images (because I don’t like to be stumped) and I’ve yet to find one with the white cells surrounded by purple.

I’m happy I got the photo as proof of what I saw, unlike the Blue Morpho of two years ago, which darted in and out of my vision before I could ready my camera. I knew what it was because we had seen them before in Costa Rica, but nobody believed I saw one in the RGV. Mr Purple, on the other hand, gave me time to get proof.

“Butterflies are self-propelled flowers.”

R. H. Heinlien