Sandland brother was a collector of snakes, rocks, especially the fossils from our gravel driveway, bugs and butterflies. We lived in the north part of Metropolitan Toronto in the mid to late 1960's just as suburban sprawl was creeping northward from the city core. From our home one could see farmers' fields which have since been paved over as the city has spread many miles north, east and west. A couple of blocks from our house a large hydro right-of-way provided a place where we played and picnicked during our endless summer holidays. Nathan had a butterfly net and would pursue flying insects, catching them and killing them in a jar before mounting them for his collection.
A Girl of the Limberlost. Elnora Comstock pays for her education by collecting rare moths in Indiana's Limberlost Swamp and selling their mounted bodies to collectors. Somehow the killing of butterflies and moths for collections has lost its appeal in this day of increased environmental awareness. But our society has depleted the habitat of many butterflies and instead of killing them, we have killed their food source with pesticides and pavement.
In this digital age we can collect butterflies with our cameras. Our city has implemented a partial ban on pesticides and city parks and schoolyards are no longer sprayed for weeds. I am once again seeing butterflies as I remember seeing them as a child in North York's hydro fields.
Our wildflowers have had a great growing season this year. Sweet Clover, Bird Vetch and Common Milkweed flowers are favoured by many insects including butterflies. And several garden flowers including Purple Coneflower attract them near our homes.
Sandland Brother arrived in Canada yesterday from the United Arab Emirates. I see him on average about every other year or so. I wonder what he is collecting now?