Subject: Bug Love- Mating Zebra Longwings
Location: Orlando, Florida
December 2, 2012 1:58 am
Hi Daniel and team. My husband got this shot when he was watching one of our zebra longwings (the Florida state butterfly)emerge from it’s chrysalis. He couldn’t believe his eyes when the other one flew up and started mating with it. We’ve noticed some of the butterflies coming around the cocoons trolling for mates. But, we also saw one of the trollers frantically knock a newly emerged one off it’s cocoon and onto the ground. We were wondering, do males fight each other? We know now to keep other butterflies away from fresh ones until they’re wings are hard. Anyway, enjoy the pic from Florida, the state of the year round butterflies.
Thanks so much for sending your photo of mating Zebra Longwings. We don’t normally think of butterflies as being aggressive, however, males of some species will defend territory. We will try to research this a bit more.