- 1. Milbert’s tortoiseshell
- 2. The Zebra Swallowtail
- 3. Red Admiral
- 4. Monarch Butterfly
- 5. Karner Blue Butterfly
- 6. Blue Morpho Butterfly
- 7. Julia
- 8. The Mourning Cloak Butterfly
- 9. Peacock Butterfly
- 10. American Snout Butterfly
- 11. Southern Dogface
- 12. Queen Alexandra Birdwing Butterfly
- 13. Giant Owl Butterfly
- 14. 88 Butterfly
- 15. Dead Leaves Butterfly
- 16. Glasswing Butterfly
- 17. Summer Azure Butterfly
- 18. Viceroy
- 19. Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly
- 20. Ulysses Butterfly
- 21. Adonis Blue
- 22. Montezuma’s Cattleheart
- 23. Chestnut Tiger
- 24. Duke of Burgundy
- 25. Small Blue Butterfly
- 26. Trans Andean Cattleheart
- 27. Map Butterfly
- 28. Geranium Bronze
- 29. Criton Birdwing
- 30. Edith’s Checkerspot
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Here are some of the butterflies you might find in your garden and quick guides to learn about the host plants you need to attract them. As you plan your butterfly garden, determine which butterflies are native to your specific region. Some are found worldwide, while others are not.
1. Milbert’s tortoiseshell
Milbert’s tortoiseshell (Nymphalis milberti) is a small butterfly with a squared-off fore-wing. The wingspan is 1.6 – 2.5 inches (4.2 – 6.3 cm). It lives in North America from southern Alaska down to Mexico. Huge batches of eggs (up to 900) are laid on nettles. The caterpillar eats nettles; the adult feeds on flowers (thistles, goldenrods, and lilacs), sap and rotting fruit.
2. The Zebra Swallowtail
The Zebra Swallowtail (Eurytides marcellus) is a butterfly with distinctive black and white markings and elongated tails on its hindwings. The caterpillar is yellow-green with black and yellow stripes. Larvae eat pawpaw. The Zebra Swallowtail has a wingspan of about 2-2.75 inches (5-7 cm). The Zebra Swallowtail lives for about 6 months in its adult stage. It is found in the eastern part of North America from Canada to Florida, USA. Family of Papilionidae.
3. Red Admiral
The Red Admiral (Vanessa atalanta) is a common migratory butterfly found in marshy north temperate regions of Asia, Europe and North America. It is a fast flier. Its caterpillar lives only on nettles. Classification: Family of Nymphalidae.
4. Monarch Butterfly
The Monarch (Danaus plexippus) is a common poisonous butterfly found worldwide. It eats milkweed in its larval stage and lays eggs on the poisonous milkweed plant. Monarchs have a wingspan of 3 3/8 – 4 7/8 inches (8.6 – 12.4 cm).
5. Karner Blue Butterfly
The Karner Blue Butterfly (Lycaeides melissa samuelis) is a small, blue butterfly that has a wingspan of about 1 inch (2.5 cm). This endangered species lives in oak savannas and pine barrens and is associated with wild lupine (Lupinus perennis, a plant that the caterpillar eats). Adults drink the nectar of horsemint, butterflyweed, and bachelors button. The adult male (pictured above) and female have a very different appearance. The upper sides of the male’s wings are silver to dark blue with white and black margins. The upper sides of the female’s wings are gray-brown to blue, with some bands of orange crescents along the bottom of the hind wing, and white and black margins. The underside of the wings of both sexes are grayish in color with orange crescents and some metallic spots along the bottom of both hind wings. The green caterpillar is tended by ants; these ants collect a sugary liquid that is secreted by the caterpillar, and the ants protect the caterpillar from some predators and parasites.
6. Blue Morpho Butterfly
The Blue Morpho butterfly (Morpho menelaus) is a species of neotropical butterfly that has iridescent blue wings (the females are not as brilliantly colored as the males and have a brown edge with white spots surrounding the iridescent blue area). The undersides (visible when the butterfly is resting) are brown with bronze-colored eyespots. Adults drink the juices of rotting fruit. The caterpillar of the Blue Morpho is red-brown with bright patches of lime-green on the back, and it eats the plant Erythroxylum pilchrumnocturnally (at night). Blue Morphos live in rainforests from Brazil to Venezuela. Blue Morphos belong to the Family Nymphalidae, Genus Morpho, and species menelaus.
The Julia is a yellow-orange tropical butterfly with long forewings. It is about 3-4 inches wide. The female Julia is a duller shade of orange and has more dark markings. The small, yellow-to-gold eggs are oval and the pupa is angular. The Julia caterpillar feeds on passion flower vine (Passiflora); the adult sips nectar from the flowers of the lantana and shepherd’s needle. Julias are found from South and Central America to the southern USA. The Julia belongs to the Heliconians, tropical butterflies that have a large head and have a bad taste and smell. It is a brush-footed butterfly (Family Nymphalidae)
8. The Mourning Cloak Butterfly
(Nymphalis antiopa, Linnaeus 1758) The mourning cloak (also known as Camberwell beauty) is a butterfly with unusual forewing outlines. The dark maroon wings have pale, speckled edges and a dark inner margin with blue spots. Eggs are laid in large clusters on elm, poplar, and willow trees. The caterpillar is black with white spots and has maroon patches on the back. This larva eats the leaves of poplar, elm, salix, and betula. Adults sip fermenting fruit juices, oak sap, and flower nectar.
9. Peacock Butterfly
The peacock butterfly (Inachis io) is a common butterfly from temperate parts of Europe (including Britain) and Asia. This butterfly makes a hissing sound when it is alarmed (usually upon seeing a bird); it makes the sound by rubbing its wings together. The wings are brownish-purple with a bright eyespot on each wing (the wings look a bit like an owl’s face). The undersides of the wings are mottled grayish-brown. The larval host plant is the stinging nettle; the caterpillar is black with spines. Classification: Family Nymphalidae (brush-footed butterflies), genus Inachis, species I. io.
10. American Snout Butterfly
The American Snout (Libytheana carinenta) is a butterfly that has long labial palps (mustache-like scaly mouthparts on either side of the proboscis) that look like a long snout. The butterfly has a 1 3/8 – 2 inch (3.5 – 5 cm) wingspan. The front pair of legs on the male (but not the female) are reduced in size. Eggs are laid in groups on the hackberry plant. The caterpillar eats hackberry (celtis); the adult sips nectar of the flowers from asters, dogbane, dogwood, goldenrod, sweet pepperbush, and more. Adult American Snout butterflies look like dead leaves. They sometimes go on long migrations. They are brush-footed butterflies (Family Libytheidae).
11. Southern Dogface
The southern dogface butterfly, Colias cesonia, is a yellow butterfly that is also known as the dog’s head butterfly. The wings are mostly yellow; there is a small dark circle in the center of the forewing and the margins of the wings are black) they look a bit like a dog’s face). Males have brighter coloration than females. The wingspan is 2 1/4 – 2 1/2 inches (58-65 cm). The caterpillar is green with black and yellow stripes. This butterfly lives in open woods in the southern half of the USA. The larval host plant is the false indigo bush, Amorpha fruticosa (a legume). Classification: family Pieridae, genus Colias (Zerene), species C. cesonia.
12. Queen Alexandra Birdwing Butterfly
This butterfly can be located on the north part of Papua New Guinea. Queen Alexandra Birdwing Butterfly is also considered as the world’s biggest butterflies with their wingspan measured in 30 cm.
13. Giant Owl Butterfly
This butterfly has a unique pattern resembling like an owl’s eyes on their wings. Giant owl Butterfly can be located under the tree. Because of this unique pattern, this beautiful creature has been named The Giant Owl Butterfly.
14. 88 Butterfly
In my opinion, this species is the most unique butterfly among the other previous butterfly. They have unique pattern like 88 number on their wings. 88 Butterfly can be located in the Pantanal Brazil.
15. Dead Leaves Butterfly
This butterfly can be located around the South Asia, Madagascar, and India forest. The dead leaves butterfly is the master of camouflage with their wings shaped like dead leaves. You are also hard to see them in the forest since they are perfectly blend with the surrounding environment.
16. Glasswing Butterfly
This animal can be located in the Central America and Mexico. The Glasswing Butterfly is probably the most favorite animal for Princess Cinderella as they shared the same thing in common. The glasswing butterfly has amazing crystal clear wings like a glass.
17. Summer Azure Butterfly
The Summer Azure Butterfly can be located on the savanna and wide environment. The wings color of this butterfly is blue and they can be found in the eastern part of North America.
This butterfly is originated from the North America. The wing of viceroy is colored in black and orange. Viceroy butterfly is active at noon until in the evening.
19. Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly
The next stunning butterfly is the tiger swallowtail butterfly. They can be located throughout the United States of America and Canada. They canbe recognized from the color of their wing which resembling like a tiger skin.
20. Ulysses Butterfly
The last stunning butterfly on the list has many nicknames start with the Blue Mountain swallowtail, the Blue Emperor and the Mountain Blue butterfly. The Ulysses Butterfly can be recognized from their blue colored wings.
21. Adonis Blue
Adonis Blue (Polyommatus bellargus) is one of many types of butterflies that live in limestone grasslands in England. They have bright blue wings, while most females are dark brown. Their unique traits are thin, dark strips that line the tips of their wings, along with white edges. Adonis Blue’s wingspan is about 1.5 inches (38 mm). Their colonies reach the peak of their numbers during summer. Adonis Blue was previously declined in numbers, but they have been multiplied to the point that they are no longer threatened.
22. Montezuma’s Cattleheart
Montezuma’s Cattleheart (Parides montezuma) is a native species of the American continent, especially in warmer parts. They live in dry forests in Mexico and Costa Rica. They thrive in areas that are 700 meters-high above the sea level. These butterflies have black wings, with orange or red crescent-like specks on their hindwings. They are sometimes seen in California and Texas. Montezuma’s Cattleheart is not an endangered species, but they can be hard to spot due to their dark colors.
23. Chestnut Tiger
Chestnut Tiger (Parantica sita) are common butterflies that live in India, Kashmir, Tibet, Pakistan, Korea, China, Japan, Taiwan, and the Himalayan region. They have large, elongated wings with black lines and dirty white or light blue color, with light markings near the tips. Their wingspans can reach 1.7 to 2.6 inches (43 to 66 mm). Chestnut Tiger is a migrating species, and they can travel over 1,000 km to find areas with pleasant weather.
24. Duke of Burgundy
Duke of Burgundy (Hamearis lucina) is a small butterfly species that live in grasslands in central southern England. They are reclusive and never visit flowers, although they usually emerge during spring and summer. The males often perch on large leaves, and the females usually fly low. Their wingspans are between 1.14 and 1.25 inches (29 and 32 mm). Duke of Burgundy is a threatened species due to deforestation and pollution. They are estimated to live in only 20 sites in England.
25. Small Blue Butterfly
Despite the name, Small Blue butterflies (Cupido minimus) are not really blue in color. Males and females usually have dark brown or greyish wings, with small specks of blue. Their wingspans are only 0.79 to 1.18 inches (20 to 30 mm), making them easy to overlook. These butterflies prefer to perch on grass blades, mainly in warm chalk grasslands in England, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland. Small Blue butterflies are not endangered, but due to declining numbers and habitats, they now become priorities in conservation programs.
26. Trans Andean Cattleheart
Trans Andean Cattleheart (Parides iphidamas) is a native species of Central and South America. They live in warm areas in the Andes region, such as the lowlands and forests in Peru, although they are also found in Costa Rica and Mexico. Their wingspans are about 3.9 inches (10 cm). The butterfly’s colors are black, and they have extended wings with white marks on the forewings and red on the hindwings. The caterpillars are poisonous, and they have horn-like appendages used to warn predators.
27. Map Butterfly
Map Butterfly (Araschnia levana) is a species that lives in eastern and central Europe, but their numbers are slowly growing in western Europe. They are common in Germany, Finland, and Estonia. These butterflies have unique colors depending on when they emerge from the chrysalis. The summer broods have orange wings with black patterns that become smaller when reaching the edges. The summer broods have dark wings with white specks. This butterfly chooses stinging nettles as nests.
28. Geranium Bronze
Geranium Bronze (Cacyreus marshalli) is a native butterfly of South Africa. They have bronze or brown wings with simple white linings on the top. The bottom parts of the wings have more intricate patterns, with net-like white and dark lines. They have two eye-like patterns on the hindwings, which they use to confuse predators. Their wingspans range from 0.7 to 0.9 inches (18 to 23 mm). Geranium Bronze was introduced to Europe in the 70’s, but now, they are considered pests for geranium and pelargonium flowers.
29. Criton Birdwing
Criton Birdwing (Troides criton) is a butterfly species that live in eastern Indonesia, particularly islands such as Halmahera, Morotai, Obi, and Ternate. This butterfly has distinctive coloring, with black wings and yellow scale marks on the hindwings. Criton Birdwing is a large butterfly, with a wingspan that reaches 5.5 to 6 inches (14 to 15 cm). There are almost no visual differences between the males and females. They are endemic species of Indonesia and considered protected.
30. Edith’s Checkerspot
Edith’s Checkerspot (Euphydryas editha) is a species that lives in North America, particularly Canada, Nevada, Baja California, Utah, San Bernardino Mountains, and the Rocky Mountains. Their wings exhibit intricate patterns of orange, white, and red. It is one of the types of butterflies that have contrasting mating habits between the males and females. The males mate several times with many females in their lifetimes, while the females only mate once.