Sometimes when initially catching a glimpse of something it can trick your perception.
I always take note of small movements in trees thinking that perhaps a stir of leaves or the sudden motion of a branch may have been caused by a bird flitting about. This time of year the hardwood trees are full of movements and I assume that probably most of the flutterings I see around trees these beautiful autumn days are often just falling leaves; however I have discovered that what I think is a falling leaf is not always necessarily so.
Yesterday morning, while leisurly walking back home from my walk, I noticed a small orange leaf floating in the air above me and didn't really note it much until I realized it was moving in an easterly direction and maintaining altitude! It wasn't a leaf at all but a butterfly! And from its size and colour I assume it was a Viceroy or Monarch. I have seen lone Monarchs on occasion these past few weeks and they were often flying high above the ground vegetation.
Hoping to take a picture of it when it alighted for identification, I turned and followed it, but soon lost sight of it in a tall hardwood.