Moth or Butterfly on Butterfly Weed
I went up to the farm Missouri) with my husband and found this insect on a butterfly weed plant. I was wondering what sort of insect this is? I like it black and white face and antenna. Thanks Mary There are actually two insects here ( mating?) but this photo is the clearest of the actual insect.
Jackie and Mary
Dear Jackie and Mary
Your butterfly is a member of the Gossamer Winged Butterflies in the Family Lycaenidae, more specifically one of the Blues in the Subfamily Polyommatinae. We are guessing either the genus Plebejus or Lycaeides. There is much variation in coloration in local populations within the same species. Most larvae feed on legumes including lupines, rattleweed and clover. The Lycaean Blues are the group of butterflies that fascinated the great author Vladimir Nabokov.
Thanks Thank you for your quick reply and the information about the identification of the butterfly and the information about the author. I have just started in photography and have found that now I am becoming very interested in the names of insects and wildflowers. I did find a pretty clear photo that shows the other butterfly. Thanks again
Your photos are very nice Mary, We surely appreciate the latest romantic image. Is it any wonder the author of Lolita was so besmitten with these lovely creatures?
Ed. Note: We just received the following correction.
misIDed pictures Hi, I love the pictures on your site, I noticed a couple of mistakes in the identification of two pictures. It is a Lycaenid, however the species is definitely Harkenclenus titus, the Coral Hairstreak, which is a beautiful tailless hairstreak, and is quite uncommon in my experience.