Imposter! Actually, it was a Viceroy!
July 3, 2010
I sent you a question that you kindly answered back on June 24, about a mystery caterpillar on the curly willow in our yard. We’d determined it was a Red Spotted Purple (and it did look just like that caterpillar). Well, imagine my surprise when I went out into the garden early this morning to find a dozen+ VICEROY butterflies! I am attaching some photos for you 🙂
Amy The Bug Girl
Little Rock, AR, USA
First, we apologize for our misidentification of your Viceroy Caterpillar last month. In our defense, the Viceroy, Limenitis archippus, and the Red Spotted Purple, Limenitis arthemis astyanax, are in the same genus and their caterpillars look very similar. We especially like that your one photo shows the Chrysalis below the newly emerged adult butterfly. It is also wonderful that you provided us with views of both the open and closed wings.