The minutes of the last meeting were given by Joan Steward, secretary, and Cynthia Humes, treasurer, gave the financial report. Blair conducted the business meeting and discussed the end-of-year activities.
The hostess gave a very informative program titled “Fly Butterflies.” Westfield began with a butterfly quiz handout which each member was asked to complete. Sheryl Gash answered the most questions and was presented a butterfly pendant.
Second to bees, butterflies are the most important pollinators for our food supply. Butterflies and moths are unique insects. They range in size from 1/8th-inch to almost 12 inches. The largest butterfly is the Queen Alexandra Birdwing with a wingspan of 12.5 inches and the smallest is the Western Pygmy Blue with a wingspan of just 0.62 inches. Butterflies see colors and are drawn to certain color flowers in gardens, such as red, green, yellow and purple.
Some butterflies are able to fly at top speed of 12 mph, but cannot fly if their body temperature is less than 86 degrees. They live an average of two to four weeks. A swallowtail butterfly lives an average of six to 14 days while a Monarch lives seven to nine months. The Mourning Cloak is believed to live the longest period of time, which is 11 months.
There are about 24,000 species of butterflies and 140,000 species of moth. In Bradley County, there are 78 butterfly and moth species verified for this region. The zebra swallowtail was designated as Tennessee’s Official Butterfly in 1995. Westfield said that if you wanted to see more butterflies in your garden, you should plant a butterfly garden and provide handouts on how to create a garden. In addition she provided a series of devotions on butterflies for your meditation time.
Butterflies are mesmerizing and captivate us with their beauty. She told us that when you think about the butterfly, remember that God has transformed each of us into unique, beautiful creatures.
Westfield provided other handouts, including The Tennessee Conservationist September/October 2012 issue, and a Region List of Butterflies identified for Bradley County.
Thanks was given to the hostess by Lelia Ware. Others in attendance were Barbara Brown, Kay Cox, Dorothy Keith, Margenia McKissic and Charlotte Scott.