Currently viewing the category: "Brush Footed Butterflies"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Leucistic butterfly
Geographic location of the bug:  8 miles SW of Casper, WY
Date: 06/21/2019
Time: 10:46 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Daniel, I thought this leucistic Variable Checkerspot butterfly I photographed 6/14/19 might interest your readers.  I’m including typically marked checkerspots for comparison.
Cheers,
How you want your letter signed:  Dwaine

Leucistic Variable Checkerspot

Dear Dwaine,
We needed to research the term “leucistic” before we could address your submission, and we learned on Merriam Webster that leucanism is “an abnormal condition of reduced pigmentation affecting various animals (such as birds, mammals, and reptiles) that is marked by overall pale color or patches of reduced coloring and is caused by a genetic mutation which inhibits melanin and other pigments from being deposited in feathers, hair, or skin.”  In continuing our research, we found there are no examples of leucistic Variable Checkerspots on BugGuide, nor is there any mention in Jeffrey Glassberg’s Butterflies Through Binoculars The West.  We are thrilled that you have allowed us to publish your images, and also thanks for including an image documenting the normal variations of the Variable Checkerspot,
Euphydryas chalcedona.

Leucistic Variable Checkerspot

You are very welcome, and I have the greatest respect for what you do.

Variable Checkerspots

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  First Monarch of the Year
Geographic location of the bug:  West LosAngeles
Date: 04/16/2019
Time: 02:34 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hi Bugman,
Found this guy probably a short while after he emerged.  What a beauty.
How you want your letter signed:  Jeff Bremer

Male Monarch

Dear Jeff,
This is a beautiful male Monarch, and we agree that he is most likely newly emerged from the chrysalis.  We have seen a few female Monarch butterflies this year nectaring from the Lantana.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Migrating Painted Ladies
Geographic location of the bug:  Los Angeles, California
Date: 03/14/2019
Time: 07:40 AM EDT
For over a week now, Daniel has been seeing 1000s of Painted Ladies flying throughout Los Angeles, including on the campus of Los Angeles City College.  One neighbor sent Daniel an email inquiring:  “Hundreds if not many more butterflies emerging from the trees in Red Hawk Canyon. Been going on all day.  I tried to get some video of them but hard to discern against the trees and greenery all around.  I think they’re Viceroys. They all seem to be heading West.  Rene.”  Another neighbor left a telephone message inquiry.  Though he did not get any images of the flight, Daniel did manage to get this image of a Painted Lady nectaring on Baccharis in Glassell Park.

Painted Lady

 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Fritillary ID
Geographic location of the bug:  Oregon, Fall River (near Bend)
Date: 02/27/2019
Time: 12:39 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Can you help identify this fritillary butterfly.  I had no idea how difficult they are to identify.  I can’t determine if this is hydaspe or maybe zerene or perhaps a different species.  Thank
How you want your letter signed:  Bruce Carlson

Fritillary, but what species???

Dear Bruce,
Thank you for including both a dorsal and ventral view.  Fritillary identification can indeed be quite challenging, but we believe it might be the Zerene Fritillary,
Speyeria zerene.  According to Butterflies Through Binoculars, The West, the Zerene Fritillary is “mid-sized fritillary that is extremely variable.”  The difficulty in distinguishing different species of Fritillaries from one another is further exacerbated by the extreme variability many species exhibit.  Here is a BugGuide image of a dorsal view for comparison and also a ventral view from BugGuide.  We would defer to any Fritillary experts on this matter.

Possibly Zerene Fritillary

Update:  January 24, 2020
Subject:  Update on fritillary ID
Your letter to the bugman:  Last year I submitted a photo that you tentatively identified as Speyeria zerene.  I now have positive ID that it is Speyeria zerene zerene:  “Hey Bruce – We have a positive ID from the experts… you did observe S.z.zerene.  See exchange below with USFWS.
Well, I consulted THE expert, Paul Hammond, and he said it was in fact S. z. zerene.  He did indicate the following:   “Speyeria z. zerene is distinguished from sympatric S. hydaspe by subtle differences in the wing color pattern, but they are often difficult to distinguish. ”  You can pass this along as a  positive id.  Rich
Richard Szlemp”
Bruce Carlson

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  What kind of butterfly is this?
Geographic location of the bug:  Taylors SC (Upstate SC)
Date: 10/02/2018
Time: 01:35 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Is this a type of Gulf Fritillary butterfly? We have about 25 chrysalis hanging on the back of our house. This one (2nd pic) hasn’t opened it’s wings yet, but I didn’t see any orange underneath, like the pictures I found online.
Thank you!
How you want your letter signed:  Tina C

Newly Emerged Gulf Fritillary

Dear Tina,
We love your image of the wall with various stages of development of Gulf Fritillaries.  Your close-ups are of a pre-pupal Gulf Fritillary Caterpillar and a newly eclosed adult Gulf Fritillary.  The dorsal surface of its wings are orange.  You must have a passion flower vine nearby.

Gulf Fritillaries: Stages of Metamorphosis

Pre-Pupal Gulf Fritillary Caterpillar

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Monarch Caterpillars?
Geographic location of the bug:  Columbus, Ohio
Date: 09/06/2018
Time: 09:24 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Do I finally have some?  After years of “growing weeds” (according to my husband), do I finally have some Monarchs on my milkweed?  I’ve spotted at least three…. I’m so excited!
How you want your letter signed:  Amber

Monarch Caterpillar

Dear Amber,
Your excitement is justifiable as these are indeed Monarch Caterpillars.  After all your years of gardening diligence, you are finally getting the rewards for your efforts.

Monarch Caterpillar

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination