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Butterfly populations are a very good indicator of the health of an area's ecosystem !!
Image provided by
photographer Pedro Montes
Also known as the Cenicienta or the Princess Perlada butterfly
Anartia jatrophae prefer open, humid areas including banks of streams and ponds, by weedy fields, shallow ditches, gardens, and parks.
They are found in parts of both of the Americas, from the southeastern United States to Argentina, and throughout the West Indies
They display a territorial behavior especially during the mating season, as the males get belligerently involved in protecting their host plant territories against other males and insects in areas where the females would lay their eggs.
Anartia jatrophae looks like antique lace.
Their wings are patterned in white, brown, and beige. They are found primarily in the Gulf Coast states and in South Carolina. They tend to fly in damp areas, where their native host plants grow. Eggs are laid singly.
They get their name from the characteristic large eye spot on each of its four wings, reminiscent of peacock feathers.
When their wings are open, the dorsal sides show a white base having beige to brown marks with two rows of light crescents by the margins of the wings.
The middle parts of the wings also have a faint cyan pigment. When the wings are closed, the ventral sides show a rather dull grayish coloration with wavy orange patterns and two black spots close to the border of the hind wings.
The forewings have one circular black spot each, while the two hind wings have two. During the dry months of winter, they look larger and more pale; during the humid summer months, they appear smaller and more colorful.
White Peacocks are sexually dimorphic with females being larger in size and grayer on the underside.
They are fast, erratic flyers.
Their host plant territories are about 15 meters in size .
The lifespan of adults is about 1 to 4 months.
Diet: caterpillars feed primarily on Water Hyssop (bacopa), Ruellia, and Lippie.
Diet: adults take pollen, petals, flower nectar from lantana, bidens, tournefortia, Spanish needle, shepherd’s needle, frogfruit, etc.
Average wingspan: 5.1 – 7 cm / 2 – 2.75"
The single biggest threat to butterfly survival is habitat destruction!!
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