The fourth in the series of photographs featuring butterflies that lived amongst the flowers of Valley View.
The following photographs were taken on May 31st, 2011. This Spicebush butterfly frequented the Wine and Roses Weigla growing on a southwestern facing slope in the garden. It is an area of the garden where the warmth of the afternoon sun encourages a myriad of insects to come out and play!
Papilio troilus Linnaeus
Identification: Upper surface of forewing is mostly black with ivory spots along margin. Upper surface of hindwing has orange spot on costal margin and sheen of bluish (female) or bluish-green (male) scales. Underside of hindwing with pale green marginal spots.
Wing Span: 3 – 4 inches (7.5 – 10 cm).
Life History: Males patrol in woods, roads and woodland edges to find receptive females. Females lay single eggs on underside of host plant leaves. Caterpillars live in shelters of folded-over leaves and come out to feed at night. Some chrysalids from each generation hibernate.
Flight: 2 generations per year from April-October. In Florida, several generations between March-December.
Caterpillar Hosts: Spicebush (Lindera benzoin), sassafras trees (Sassafras albidum); perhaps prickly ash (Zanthoxylum americanum), tulip tree (Liriodendron tulipifera), sweetbay (Magnolia virginiana), camphor (Cinnamomum camphora), and redbay (Persea borbonia).
Adult Food: Nectar from Japanese honeysuckle, jewelweed, thistles, milkweed, azalea, dogbane, lantana, mimosa, and sweet pepperbush.
Habitat: Deciduous woodlands, fields, roadsides, yards, pine barrens, wooded swamps, and parks.
Range: Eastern states from southern Canada to Florida; west to Oklahoma and central Texas. Occasionally strays to North Dakota, central Colorado, and Cuba.
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Be sure to stop back to view new images of butterflies in and around the garden!
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