Frosted elfin butterflies aren’t much to look at. Their 1-inch wingspan and brownish-gray wings give them the appearance more of a moth than a majestic monarch butterfly.
Jennifer Selfridge doesn’t see them that way, though. Thirteen years after her first glimpse of the species on the site of a recently cleared Maryland forest, her voice still crackles with excitement.
“It was fantastic,” said Selfridge, an invertebrate ecologist with the state’s Department of Natural Resources. “A lot of times when you go out to find a species that is rare, you’re lucky to see one or two — and on this day, I saw dozens of them. I lost track of time and got a really bad sunburn.”[Continue Reading]