ABOVE LEFT An Eastern tiger swallowtail butterfly collects nectar from a Tithonia, also known as a Mexican sunflower, in Fairhope. A member of the Asteraceae family, sunflowers are a common food source for the butterfly.
ABOVE RIGHT A native brown pelican peeks into a Baldwin County backyard looking for his next meal.
ABOVE A male green anole, displays his bold, pink dewlap in hopes of scoring a date.
ABOVE LEFT A rooster lets out a cock-a-doodle-doo. Although backyard chicken coops are a growing local trend, be careful before purchasing them as pets, as navigating each city’s poultry pet ordinances can be a little tricky.
ABOVE RIGHT A bright fuschia hibiscus is just one of the types of colorful fauna that can be found at Mobile Botanical Gardens.
ABOVE LEFT A dragonfly performs a handstand. The aerial gymnasts are welcome here, as they eat pesky mosquitoes.
ABOVE RIGHT Pucker up, ladies. Bullfrogs, like this one caught in Fairhope, can often be found hopping around Lower Alabama swamps, lakes and ponds. The amphibians get their names from the sound the male bullfrog makes when defending his territory – it’s similar to the roar of a bull.
ABOVE LEFT Fiddler crabs are on the move at Pelican Point.
ABOVE RIGHT There are two types of snapping turtles. Common snapping turtles, like this local, have smoother shells than their close relatives, alligator snapping turtles, which boast a spikier surface.
ABOVE April and May are breeding months for American alligators frequently found in the Delta. Once the eggs have been fertilized, the mother alligator uses mud and vegetation to create a nest. She then lays her 30 to 70 eggs and covers them with more foliage. Nine weeks later, the eggs hatch and the newborns start making a squeaking sound, which lets the mama know it is time to break the nest so that the miniature creatures may leave and learn to survive in the wild.
Centennial Building on the Faulkner State Community College Campus, Fairhope.
6:30 p.m., second Thursday of the month. This group provides locals of all skill levels, who are interested in photography, with opportunities to learn more about the art. Group members share tales of their experiences and also participate in organized nature shoots.
text by Mallory Boykin • photos by Kathy Hicks