Currently viewing the category: "Brush Footed Butterflies"
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Subject: A moth with a face, what is it?
Location: Las Salinas, Rivas Department of Nicaragua
July 24, 2016 12:09 pm
I am an expat in Las Salinas, Nicaragua by the Pacific Coast. I enjoy butterflies and moths. However about three weeks ago I photographed this moth that has a strange face. I cannot find any online resources to help me identity it. Any help would be grateful and appreciated.
Signature: Christy C. R. Kennedy

Scarlet Leafwing

Scarlet Leafwing

Dear Christy,
When attempting an insect identification, narrowing down the search to a family is always helpful.  This is a Brush-Footed Butterfly in the family Nymphalidae, not a moth.  Furthermore, it looked to us like one of the Leafwing Butterflies.  Our first clue was a matching thumbnail we found on Neotropical Butterflies, but alas, the name associated with the thumbnail, Pylene Prepona, was obviously incorrect, so we dragged the thumbnail into photoshop hoping it was named, and we got lucky as it was labeled
Siderone galanthis and that name led us to the Butterflies of Amazonia site and the Scarlet Leafwing.  The site states:  “The tribe Anaeini comprises of 87 neotropical species in the genera Coenophlebia, Anaea, Consul, Memphis, Polygrapha, Siderone, Fountainea and Zaretis. The butterflies are characterised by having a very rapid and strong flight. They have stout bodies, falcate wings, and on the upper surface are generally black, marked with bands of orange, bright red, or lustrous blue according to genus and species. The undersides of all Anaeini are cryptically patterned in mottled brown tones, and bear a very strong resemblance to dead leaves.
Siderone galanthis is distributed from Mexico to southern Brazil, and also occurs in the Caribbean on Cuba, the Dominican Republic, and Trinidad.”  Butterflies of America also has some nice images.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What is this Moth or Butterfly
Location: United Kingdom
July 23, 2016 11:49 am
I took this today in Oxfordshire, UK and wanted to know what it was, thanks for any help in advance.
Signature: Sandra

Large Tortoiseshell

Large Tortoiseshell

Dear Julie,
This is a very exciting posting for us.  We have identified your butterfly as a Large Tortoiseshell,
Nymphalis polychloros.  According to UK Butterflies:  “In Victorian times the Large Tortoiseshell was considered widespread and common in woodland in southern England. However, this beautiful insect has since suffered a severe decline and there have been less than 150 records since 1951. This butterfly, whose numbers were always known to fluctuate, is generally considered to be extinct in the British Isles, with any sightings considered to be migrants from the continent or accidental or deliberate releases of captive-bred stock. Several causes of its decline have been suggested – including climate change, parasitism, and the effect of Dutch Elm disease on one of its primary foodplants. The hope, of course, is that this butterfly is able to once again colonise our islands. Although previously found in many parts of England, Wales and Scotland, the greatest concentrations were in the midlands, south and east of England. This species has not been recorded from Ireland. Recent sightings have come from the south coast, in particular from South Devon, South Hampshire, the Isle of Wight and West Sussex.”

 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Caterpillar identification
Location: Kalamazoo Michigan
July 13, 2016 6:37 pm
This little guy and a couple friends are eating my plants in flowering pot
Signature: Jack

American Lady Caterpillar

American Lady Caterpillar

Dear Jack,
This beautiful caterpillar is an American Lady Caterpillar, and according to BugGuide:  “Larvae feed on Cudweeds, Everlastings and Pussytoes –
Gnaphalium, Anaphalis, Antennaria.”  BugGuide also notes that other names for the American Lady are “Hunter’s Butterfly” and “Dama dos ojos” in Spanish.

Thanks Daniel. I will make an extra effort to protect them. Butterflies are a spectacular creation.
Have a great day.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Butterfly Alaska
Location: Anchorage, Alaska
July 11, 2016 1:08 pm
My daughter and I found this butterfly floating through our backyard. I think they are attracted to all of our flowers and flowering trees and shrubs. I also think they like some of the water than gets sprayed all over the yard by my toddler. I love butterflies and usually only see the yellow swallowtails. I’ve never seen one like this before. (Taken in Anchorage ,Alaska May 2016)
Signature: MsRobin

Mourning Cloak

Mourning Cloak

Dear MsRobin,
This lovely butterfly is a Mourning Cloak, and we doubt it is attracted to the flowers in your yard.  Mourning Cloaks are more unusual in their dietary preferences.  They prefer rotting fruit and sap oozing from trees to nectar derived from blossoms.  Mourning Cloaks are also among the most long lived butterflies because those that mature toward the end of summer will hibernate as adults.  They are known to fly about on sunny winter days while there is still snow on the ground to search for tree sap.  We would love to have you submit images of your Alaskan Swallowtails as well.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Monarchs 2016
Location: Columbus, Ohio
June 26, 2016 10:00 am
Hey all at What’s That Bug!! I just had my first Monarch Butterfly sighting of the year. Inspite of my hubby’s comment of “I can’t believe we’re growing weeds in the garden”, my milkweeds are blooming this year, and I just saw my first monarch taking a drink. They seem to be a bit more “flighty” (forgive the pun) than the other butterflies we get, so I’m afraid these aren’t my best pics, but I wanted to let you all know that the Monarchs are in Ohio!
Signature: Amber

Monarch nectaring on Milkweed

Monarch nectaring on Milkweed

Dear Amber,
Thanks so much for providing us documentation of your successful propagation of milkweed and the subsequent attraction of your first Monarch butterfly.  Milkweed is the food plant for the caterpillars of the Monarch butterfly, and the flowers are a rich source of nectar for many butterflies, making milkweed an excellent addition to any butterfly garden.  We just returned from a trip to Youngstown, Ohio, on the Pennsylvania border, and we were struck at the dearth of milkweed on roadsides.  Many years ago, milkweed was quite common, but as farming techniques became more efficient, and as more open space was cleared to rear crops, milkweed populations have diminished, leading to decreased populations of Monarch butterflies as well.  Your individual is a male, as evidenced by the black spots on the hind wings.  See the Arizona State University Ask a Biologist page for a visual difference between male and female Monarch.  Hopefully, female Monarchs will also visit your milkweed and lay eggs.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Red admiral proboscis
Location: Troy, VA
June 24, 2016 10:25 am
I know that the red admiral is not a rare butterfly, but I thought I would submit this picture because you can see his proboscis fairly clearly and really, his antennae are lovely.
Signature: Grace Pedalino

Red Admiral Puddling

Red Admiral Puddling

Dear Grace,
Rarity is not a criterion for posting to our site.  Actually, if the truth be made known, the Red Admiral is one of our favorite butterflies.  Perhaps it is because they and Mourning Cloaks are so long lived that they seem to have so much more personality than other butterflies.  Famed author and amateur lepidopterist Vladimir Nabokov playfully referred to the Red Admiral as the Red Admirable.  Your individual appears to be puddling, taking moisture and also important minerals, from the mud.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination