50 Frequent Butterflies Present in the USA! (2023)

50 Frequent Butterflies Present in the USA! (2023)

What sorts of butterflies can you discover in the USA?

I really like watching butterflies in my neighborhood! It’s wonderful to see the unimaginable number of totally different colours, patterns, and sizes.

There are a whole bunch of sorts of butterflies in the USA (roughly 750)! Since it might be inconceivable to record them multi function article, I selected the most typical and thrilling species to share with you as we speak. ????

At this time, you’ll study 50 sorts of butterflies present in the USA.

#1. Purple Admiral

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Purple Admirals have a wingspan of 1.75 to 2.5 inches.
  • The coloring is darkish brown with a reddish round band and white spots. The underside of the again wings seems to be much like bark.
  • The caterpillars are pinkish-gray to charcoal with white spots. They’ve spines alongside the again that resemble hairs.


The Purple Admiral is essentially the most widespread butterfly in the USA!


Search for this lovely butterfly close to the sting of forests in moist habitats. Purple Admiral Butterflies have a singular favourite meals – they love fermented fruit! Should you’d like to draw them, attempt inserting overripe lower fruit in a sunny spot in your yard.

Purple Admirals are migratory butterflies. They fly south towards hotter climates in winter, after which transfer north once more in late spring, the place meals is extra plentiful.


Should you’re on the lookout for a butterfly in the USA that’s straightforward to look at, you’re in luck! Purple Admirals are very calm and simple to strategy and regularly land on people!


#2. Painted Woman

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Painted Woman butterflies have a wingspan of 1.75 to 2.5 inches.
  • The coloring is pinkish-orange, with darkish brown to black markings close to the wingtips and white spots contained in the black markings.
  • The caterpillars’ coloring is variable, starting from greenish-yellow to charcoal. Most have light-colored spots.


Search for Painted Woman butterflies in the USA in open areas which can be quiet and undisturbed, like roadsides, pastures, and gardens. This species migrates south to Mexico over winter and returns within the spring.

The inhabitants of Painted Woman butterflies may be drastically totally different from 12 months to 12 months. It’s frequent for them to not be seen for years in a row in some locations, then all of a sudden present up in additional important numbers.


The Painted Woman is the one butterfly that mates year-round! Due to its fixed migration sample, it spends its whole life in appropriate areas for its eggs to hatch.


#3. Monarch

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Monarch butterflies have a wingspan of three.5 to 4 inches.
  • Their recognizable coloring is a “stained glass” sample of orange with black veins. White dots line the skin fringe of the wings.
  • Caterpillars are plump, with black, white, and yellow bands and tentacles on every finish of its physique.


Monarchs are simply essentially the most acknowledged butterfly in the USA!


They’re well-known for his or her shade sample and migration. Search for Monarchs wherever there’s milkweed, which is the one meals supply their caterpillars eat.

Most individuals are accustomed to the declining inhabitants of Monarchs. Nonetheless, you may not know that this means an total inhabitants decline of many different pollinating species like bees. Planting native milkweed species to draw Monarchs will even assist these different species.


Throughout migration, normally in mid-September, you might even see teams of a whole bunch flying south!


#4. American Woman

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • American Woman Butterflies have a wingspan of 1.75 to 2.5 inches.
  • The coloring of this species is an excellent orange with darkish borders and markings and white and purple spots. The underwings have an ornate sample much like a cobweb.


Search for American Woman butterflies in the USA close to open landscapes with leafy, flowering vegetation.

On the underside of the wings, American Woman butterflies have eyespots. These round markings make the butterfly look intimidating to predators, averting potential hazard.


Eyespots aren’t distinctive to butterflies – moths, different bugs, and even some fish species show this evolutionary protection technique!


Moreover, American Woman butterflies are nervous and can usually take flight on the slightest disturbance.


#5. Viceroy

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Viceroy butterflies have a wingspan of two.5 to three.25 inches.
  • Their coloring is deep orange with black edges and veins and white spots on the black border.
  • The caterpillar is a mixture of inexperienced, brown, and cream colours. It has two “horns” on its head that seem like knobby antennae.


The very first thing you would possibly discover concerning the Viceroy butterfly is that it’s virtually equivalent to the Monarch! The simplest method to inform them aside is to search for the black line on the underside wing. This line is current in Viceroys, however not Monarchs.

Though these two butterflies are related in look, their caterpillars look remarkably totally different. Viceroy caterpillars are greenish-brown, spiny, and positively not as lovely as Monarch caterpillars.

I consider them because the “ugly duckling” of caterpillars, however they’re one of many prettiest butterflies in the USA!


One different key distinction between these two species is that Viceroys don’t migrate. As a substitute, the caterpillars roll up and hibernate in leaves and emerge throughout the subsequent breeding season.


#6. Hackberry Emperor

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Hackberry Emperors have a wingspan of two to 2.75 inches.
  • The intricate sample of this species is amber brown and almost black, with orange-ringed eyespots and plenty of spots in darkish brown and white.
  • Caterpillars are mild inexperienced with two yellow stripes on the again. Two quick spines prime the pinnacle, and there are two small tails on the rear finish.


Hackberry Emperor butterflies are frequent in the USA.


Search for them in moist wooded areas, parks, and suburban yards. One place you WON’T discover Hackberry Emperors is on flowers since they don’t eat flower nectar in any respect!

Though flowers don’t entice them, they’re naturally curious and can even land on people who occur to be close to them. One cause for this behavior is to ingest sodium from our pores and skin! This can be laborious to consider, however Hackberry Emperors discover the minerals they should survive in tons of bizarre locations, like soil, rocks, and even pavement!


They additionally eat sap, dung, carrion, and rotting fruit and drink water from rain puddles. They could be one of many least choosy eaters I’ve encountered!


#7. Purple-Noticed Purple

  • Limenitis arthemis astyanax

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Purple-Noticed Purple butterflies have a wingspan of three to 4 inches.
  • Coloring is iridescent blackish-blue, with rows of spots on the outer fringe of the wings. The spots are generally orange or crimson, however in some morphs, the spots are mild blue. The undersides of the wings are sooty black.
  • Caterpillars are mottled brown, cream, and yellow, with lumpy, angular physique sections and twig-like horns.


Purple-Noticed Purples are one of the vital lovely butterflies in the USA!


Their shimmery, dark-purple wings and vibrant red-orange spots permit them to face out – and amazingly, that is truly their most important protection towards predators! They developed their coloring to imitate the toxic Pipevine Swallowtail butterfly.

What’s wonderful about Purple-Noticed Purple butterflies is that members of the identical species can look fully totally different. Within the northern a part of its vary, the place there aren’t any Pipevine Swallowtail, this similar butterfly is known as the White Admiral!


As a substitute of nectar, Purple-Noticed Purple butterflies eat carrion, sap, and rotting fruit. To draw them, attempt placing a lower orange or banana in a suet cage in your yard. You’re almost definitely to see them throughout their lively season from April to October.


#8. White Admiral

  • Limenitis arthemis arthemis

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • White Admiral butterflies have a wingspan of three to 4 inches.
  • This species’ coloring is black with a vibrant white band on the middle of the higher wings.
  • Their caterpillars are mottled brown, cream, and yellow, with lumpy, angular physique sections and twig-like horns.


What’s wonderful about White Admirals is regardless that they give the impression of being wildly totally different from Purple-Noticed Purple butterflies, they’re truly the identical species!


Purple-Noticed Purple butterflies in the USA modified shade to imitate one other species. Because the mimic species isn’t as widespread, the White Admiral butterfly with its unique coloring remains to be current.

In addition to their look, virtually every thing about these two subspecies is analogous. For instance, their caterpillars use willow, aspen, and birch bushes as hosts.


To draw White Admirals, attempt placing a lower orange or banana in a suet cage in your yard. As a substitute of nectar, White Admiral butterflies eat carrion, sap, and rotting fruit.


They’re most lively from April to October, which is their mating season.

#9. Mourning Cloak

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Mourning Cloaks have a wingspan of three to 4 inches.
  • The coloring is black with an iridescent sheen. A yellow border and a row of purple spots mark the outer fringe of the wings.
  • Caterpillars are black with white specks and a row of crimson spots on the again.


Mourning Cloak butterflies are most frequently discovered close to deciduous forests. Nonetheless, their habitat contains many developed areas like suburban yards, parks, and golf programs.


You might need a tough time discovering this butterfly in the USA.


Though it’s pretty widespread, its desire for chilly climate and solitary habits make it laborious to identify even for an avid butterfly fanatic! As well as, it’s so well-camouflaged when its wings are folded that you just would possibly miss one proper in entrance of you. 

Mourning Cloaks are sometimes the primary butterflies to turn into lively within the spring! Actually, some adults are even lively by way of winter on heat days, when snow remains to be on the bottom.


They’re additionally one of many longest-lived butterflies round, with some people residing as much as ten months!


#10. Pearl Crescent

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Pearl Crescent butterflies have a wingspan of 1.25 to 1.75 inches.
  • Their coloring is vibrant orange with black borders, spots, and features. The sample created by the black markings is much like lace.
  • Caterpillars are darkish brown with cream stripes and spines throughout their our bodies.


Search for Pearl Crescent butterflies in the USA close to moist floor.


They like open, sunny habitats however many areas swimsuit their wants, together with forest edges, fields, meadows, and gardens.

The Pearl Crescent caterpillar’s most well-liked host is the Aster plant. Any flowering vegetation in your yard will entice this lovely butterfly, however for greatest outcomes, attempt to discover one which’s native to your space.


When the caterpillars develop into butterflies, they are going to feed on the nectar of the Asters as nicely!


#11. Query Mark

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Query Mark butterflies have a wingspan of two.25 to three inches.
  • Their coloring is deep orange with black spots and a lavender edge.
  • Caterpillars are grey to black with spines on the aspect and orange and cream stripes.


Search for Query Mark butterflies in moist woodland and forest edges. Their caterpillars’ most well-liked host vegetation are elm bushes and nettle, so that you’re almost definitely to see this species in areas with elm forests or thickets of nettle, or each.

Query Marks function vibrant coloring on the higher aspect of their wings, however the decrease aspect is mottled brown. This coloring helps to camouflage the butterflies, making them resemble a lifeless leaf whereas resting on branches.


Their identify comes from a slight, light-colored marking on the underside of the wing. It takes some creativeness, however this marking type of seems to be like a roughly drawn query mark!


#12. Japanese Comma

Figuring out Traits:

  • Japanese Comma butterflies have a wingspan of two to 2.5 inches.
  • Coloring is orange with black mottling on the higher wings and primarily black with some orange spots on the decrease wings.
  • Caterpillars are black or greenish with a white stripe down the perimeters and white spines.


Japanese Comma butterflies dwell in deciduous forests, suburban yards, and parks.


Nettle and Elm Timber are the popular hosts for his or her caterpillars. Adults are usually not drawn to flowers however as an alternative feed on rotting fruit, carrion, and animal dung. So this almost definitely isn’t a species you’d wish to entice to your yard! ????

Nonetheless, they’re very prevalent, and your probability of seeing one is sweet.


Curiously, Japanese Commas hibernate as adults as an alternative of as caterpillars. Throughout winter, they discover shelter in log piles, tree hollows, and even some human-made shelters. Their mating season is early spring, and new generations of butterflies turn into lively in early summer season.


#13. Frequent Buckeye

Figuring out Traits:

  • Frequent Buckeye butterflies have a wingspan of two to 2.5 inches.
  • Their coloring is brown with orange bars. Black and white rings define three to 4 outstanding eyespots with middles in blue, magenta, orange, and inexperienced shades.
  • Caterpillars are darkish brown to black with stripes alongside the again and sides and spines across the whole physique.


Frequent Buckeyes want open areas like pastures, outdated fields, and roadsides in the USA. Though they’re laborious to strategy and cautious of predators, they fly low to the bottom and can usually perch lengthy sufficient so that you can snap a photograph.


Within the southern U.S., Frequent Buckeyes don’t have a particular mating season. Since they’ll dwell within the southern local weather all 12 months, they frequently reproduce.

Frequent Buckeyes in northern states migrate south for the winter and return within the spring for mating. These northern people can produce two to 4 generations every season!

#14. Variegated Fritillary

Figuring out Traits:

  • Variegated Fritillary butterflies have a wingspan of 1.75 to 2.25 inches.
  • The coloring of this species is tawny brown to burnt orange with black dots and features. The outer fringe of the wings can be lined in black.
  • Caterpillars are reddish-orange, with white stripes that run the size of the physique and black spines.


Search for these butterflies in the USA in meadows, open heaps, and fields.

Plant flowers like butterfly weed, mint, and sunflowers to draw them to your backyard. Decorative vegetation like violets, pansies, and passionflower function hosts for his or her caterpillars.


The Variegated Fritillary’s chrysalis is among the most lovely of all of the butterflies in the USA. This protecting shell is the place the caterpillar transforms into the grownup butterfly. Its pearly white shade and glossy gold spikes make it seem like an costly jeweled pendant!


#15. Nice Spangled Fritillary

Figuring out Traits:

  • Nice Spangled Fritillary butterflies have a wingspan of two.5 to three.5 inches.
  • Their coloring is orange with black traces and dots that kind a web-like sample on their wings. As well as, the undersides of their wings have silvery white dots outlined in black.


The Nice Spangled Fritillary is certainly one of many butterflies in the USA that prefers open, sunny areas like pastures and meadows.


It’s not unusual to see a whole bunch of them in massive milkweed or violet fields!

This species doesn’t migrate; as an alternative, its caterpillars hibernate over winter and emerge within the spring. That occurs across the similar time as the brand new development on their host violet vegetation seems.


Curiously, male Nice Spangled Fritillaries die weeks earlier than females, proper after mating. The females then feed for one more two to a few weeks and lay eggs earlier than additionally dying off.


#16. Aphrodite Fritillary

Figuring out Traits:

  • Aphrodite Fritillary butterflies have a wingspan of two to three inches.
  • Their coloring is vibrant yellow-orange with a community of black webbing and dots. On the underside of the wings, there are black-ringed blueish-white dots as nicely.


Search for Aphrodite Fritillaries in meadows, fields, and pastures in the USA.

The caterpillar’s host plant is violets, so any plantings of this flower will entice grownup Aphrodite Fritillaries. They lay eggs on the bottom close to violet vegetation, and when the eggs hatch, the caterpillars crawl to the violets to hibernate.


Many flowers in a typical butterfly backyard will even entice grownup Aphrodite Fritillaries. Attempt planing milkweed, butterfly weed, thistles, or goldenrod if you happen to’d prefer to see extra of this species.


#17. Meadow Fritillary

Figuring out Traits:

  • Meadow Fritillary butterflies have a wingspan of 1.5 to 2 inches.
  • Their coloring is yellow-orange with dusky black splotches. The underside of their wings is muted in shade and appears like a lifeless leaf, which is used for camouflage.


Meadow Fritillary butterflies in the USA have the scientific identify Boloria bellona, which is within the brush-foot household. That’s typically complicated since a European butterfly has the identical identify, however the two species are solely distantly associated!

Our Meadow Fritillaries are lively all through the summer season and quite common of their vary, so this is a superb butterfly to draw to your backyard.


Aster flowers like Black-eyed Susans, daisies, and sunflowers are widespread picks to draw them.


#18. Silver-Bordered Fritillary

Figuring out Traits:

  • Silver-Bordered Fritillaries have a wingspan of 1.6 to 2.1 inches.
  • Their coloring is vibrant orange with irregular black markings. The wings have a skinny white edge and a thick black border with orange dots inside. The underside of the wing has metallic, silvery dots alongside the sting, which is how this species obtained its identify.


Silver-Bordered Fritillaries are small, uncommon butterflies in the USA.


Their most well-liked habitat is moist grassland, which is commonly became agricultural fields. This habitat disruption has precipitated a decline within the inhabitants of the Silver-Bordered Fritillary.

Regardless of these challenges, you may nonetheless entice Silver-Bordered Fritillaries to your backyard by planting violets for his or her caterpillars or thistle as a nectar flower.


They sometimes fly low to the bottom in jerky, quick actions, so hold your eyes on the grass and look out for streaks of orange!

#19. Frequent Wooden-Nymph

Figuring out Traits:

  • Frequent Wooden-Nymphs have a wingspan of two to three inches.
  • Coloring can differ drastically, however typically, this species is shades of brown with darkish eyespots.
  • Caterpillars are yellow-green with darkish inexperienced stripes and white hairs.


Frequent Wooden-Nymphs are present in many alternative habitats, together with open forests, meadows, agricultural fields, and salt marshes. Their caterpillars hatch late in fall and hibernate by way of the winter.

Search for this species in late summer season and early fall because it’s most lively this time of 12 months.


Grownup Frequent Wooden-Nymphs sometimes eat flower nectar however want to feed on rotting fruit or decaying vegetation.


That is certainly one of few species whose host plant (which the caterpillar eats) is grass. Kentucky Bluegrass, certainly one of its favorites, can be a well-liked garden grass. So, you might not even have to plant something new to draw this species!


#20. Little Wooden Satyr

Figuring out Traits:

  • Little Wooden Satyrs have a wingspan of 1.5 to 1.9 inches.
  • They’re brown with a number of yellow-ringed eyespots. Their prime wings have two eyespots, and their backside wings can have one to a few.


Search for Little Wooden Satyrs in shady woodland areas, clearings, and close by brushy areas. They like to remain near the bottom and even use leaf litter as a perch to relaxation, as an alternative of branches or tall grass like another species.

Little Wooden Satyrs are usually not drawn to flowers as a result of they don’t eat nectar. You’d most likely be stunned and sort of disgusted by its common weight-reduction plan!


As a substitute of wildflowers or candy fruit, this species is drawn to animal dung, rotting mushrooms, and outdated sap flows. So it’s most likely greatest to seek out this butterfly in its pure habitat as an alternative of attempting to draw it to your yard!


#21. American Snout

Figuring out Traits:

  • American Snout butterflies have a wingspan of 1.5 to 2 inches.
  • The coloring is brown with orange and white patches that resemble a lifeless leaf. As well as, the higher aspect of the wings is extra closely patterned and darker in shade.


One have a look at this unusual butterfly, and also you’ll know why it’s referred to as the American Snout! This species’ lengthy, beak-like “snout” is used as camouflage, making the butterfly look extra leaf-like.


There aren’t any different butterflies in the USA with this function!


Though American Snout butterflies migrate north yearly, they’re typically uncommon in most of their habitat and laborious to seek out due to their glorious camouflage. When they’re seen, it’s usually in large migratory teams which can be so huge they’ll darken the sky!

#22. Azure

Figuring out Traits:

  • Azure Butterflies have a wingspan of 0.75 to 1.25 inches.
  • Their coloring is dusky grey to cornflower blue, with spots and stripes in shades of grey. Females of this species are usually darker and fewer colourful.

Azure butterflies in the USA are present in open woodlands, forest edges, roadsides, and mountain climbing trails.


They’re one of the vital widely-seen species in our space and really ample inside their vary.

It’s frequent to see Azure butterflies earlier than spring flowers are even in bloom! Azures are a part of the Gossamer-Winged butterfly household, which will get its identify from their wings’ fringed, fabric-like texture.


Three extra Azures have not too long ago been given species standing:

  • Summer season Azure, Celastrina neglecta, is normally discovered later within the 12 months and has extra vibrant coloring than its early cousin.
  • Appalachian Azure, Celastrina neglectamajor, has a smaller vary however is the biggest Azure butterfly.
  • Dusky Asure, Celastrina nigra, is the least vibrant, usually with no blue or ashen gray-blue wings.


#23. Japanese Tailed-Blue

Figuring out Traits:

  • Japanese Tailed-Blue butterflies have a wingspan of 0.75 to 1 inch.
  • Men and women have very totally different coloring on their higher wings. Males are sensible blue with a brown border and white edges, and females are grayish-brown with white edges. Each sexes have one or two small orange spots above the wing tails.


Search for Japanese Tailed-Blue butterflies in the USA in vacant heaps, pastures, and residential gardens.


They’re certainly one of our most ample species and simply drawn to flowers.

The simplest method to determine Japanese Tailed-Blues is by their hair-like tails on every of the hind wings. However, these usually break off, so you might discover some people with out tails.


The silvery-blue shade of the underside of their wings is one other good signal that you just’ve discovered an Japanese Tailed-Blue.


#24. Grey Hairstreak

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grey Hairstreak butterflies have a wingspan of 1 to 1.5 inches.
  • Their coloring is slate grey with a single vibrant orange spot on every decrease wing. Beneath, their wings are mild grey with a black and white stripe.


Search for Grey Hairstreak butterflies in open areas like roadsides, unused pasture, and rural meadows. Their caterpillars use many vegetation as hosts, in order that they’re frequent throughout many alternative habitats.

Grey Hairstreaks are one of some butterflies in the USA with skinny, lengthy wing tails that resemble hairs.


This adaptation is a defensive technique that attracts predators away from the butterfly’s physique. By mimicking a head with antennae and utilizing its eyespots as a distraction, Grey Hairstreaks give themselves time to flee!


#25. Coral Hairstreak

Figuring out Traits:

  • Coral Hairstreaks have a wingspan of 0.9 to 1.25 inches.
  • Their coloring is mild grayish-brown with an outer row of coral spots ringed in black. Additionally they have a second row of smaller black spots ringed in white.


You’re unlikely to mistake a Coral Hairstreak with every other butterfly in the USA!


Its coloring, each on the wings and its physique, makes it distinctive amongst small butterflies.

Coral Hairstreaks want brushy fields and woodland edges with loads of dense shrubs. Adults are particularly drawn to milkweed blossoms for his or her nectar and as a spot to perch.


Coral Hairstreak caterpillars use wild cherry and American plum bushes as their hosts and feed on the fruits of those bushes.


#26. Banded Hairstreak

Figuring out Traits:

  • Banded Hairstreak butterflies have a wingspan of 1 to 1.25 inches.
  • Their coloring varies from brown to slate grey. As well as, they’ve black-bordered crimson dots alongside the outer fringe of the wings, white stripes, and a blue patch close to the wing tails.


Search for Banded Hairstreak butterflies in forested areas or sunny clearings close to woods. Grownup butterflies are drawn to nectar vegetation, so it ought to be fairly straightforward to draw this species if you happen to dwell close to a wooded space.

Planting dogbane or meadowsweet will assist you could have extra sightings.


Adults are lively for about 4 weeks in early summer season, they usually mate a single time throughout this lively season. The eggs survive by way of summer season, fall, and winter and hatch into caterpillars within the spring.


The caterpillars feed on oak, walnut, and hickory bushes. Subsequently, any space with these species is a superb place to identify the Banded Hairstreak!


#27. American Copper

Figuring out Traits:

  • American Copper butterflies have a wingspan of 0.75 to 1.5 inches.
  • Their coloring follows a definite sample: the higher wings are orange with black spots and a grey border, and the decrease wings are inverted, with a grey center and a black and orange border. The underside of each wings is mild grey with tiny black flecks.
  • Caterpillars are mild inexperienced and typically have a pinkish tint alongside their sides. They’re lined with fantastic, downy hairs.


American Coppers go by many different names around the globe!


Also referred to as Little Coppers, Frequent Coppers, and different regional names, this species is among the most widespread butterflies.

American Coppers can face up to many alternative climates, from the lengthy, chilly winters of the far north to humid, sizzling climate close to the equator. American Copper butterflies are ordinarily lively from June to September, however this season is longer in hotter areas.


To draw this species to your backyard, attempt planting hawkweed or butterfly weed – these are the adults’ favorites for nectar.

#28. Black Swallowtail

Figuring out Traits:

  • Black Swallowtails have a wingspan of two.5 to 4.25 inches.
  • The coloring is black with rows of sunshine yellow spots. It has one red-orange eyespot and several other blue spots on every hind wing.
  • Caterpillars are inexperienced with black bands containing yellow spots.

Black Swallowtails are one of the vital frequent backyard butterflies in the USA.


They love flower nectar and regularly cease to drink on backyard vegetation.

Their caterpillars use cultivated herbs like parsley and mint as host vegetation. They’ll typically be dangerous to those vegetation in the event that they feed an excessive amount of, so keep watch over your herb backyard if in case you have Black Swallowtails round!


Black Swallowtails are glorious at mimicry, which is an evolutionary protection mechanism. They’ve developed markings much like the Pipevine Swallowtail, which is poisonous to most predators. On this method, Black Swallowtails can conceal in plain sight!


#29. Japanese Tiger Swallowtail

Figuring out Traits:

  • Japanese Tiger Swallowtails have a wingspan of three.5 to five.5 inches.
  • The coloring is variable based mostly on intercourse. Males are all the time vibrant yellow with black stripes and borders. Females have two shade kinds:
    • Mild females are barely darker yellow with extra outstanding black markings.
    • Darkish females are virtually solely black, with mild blue speckling on the decrease wings.


This species is among the most hanging butterflies in the USA!


The intense coloring and enormous wings of the Japanese Tiger Swallowtail make it straightforward to see and determine.

You’ll most frequently spot this butterfly by itself, because it’s a solitary flier. Should you’re fortunate, although, you would possibly see a gaggle of male Japanese Tiger Swallowtails “puddling,” grouped collectively on a patch of moist floor to drink water. 


This species loves flowers and is straightforward to draw to house gardens. Attempt planting tall-stalked flowers like phlox, ironweed, and lilac in your yard.


One wonderful function of this species is the protection technique of its caterpillar. It has huge eyespots and an enlarged head that make it seem like a snake to predators! Its look positively says “again off!” regardless that it’s actually innocent.


#30. Spicebush Swallowtail

Figuring out Traits:

  • Spicebush Swallowtails have a wingspan of three to 4 inches.
  • Their coloring is darkish brown to black, with a border of cream-colored spots on the sting of the wings. As well as, the hind wings have a cloudy patch of both greenish-blue or vibrant blue.
  • Caterpillars are vibrant yellow with rows of tiny inexperienced spots on the physique and a outstanding black eyespot ringed in white.


Spicebush Swallowtails are present in forests, swamps, and unused fields.


They’ve a protracted lively season and are plentiful from late spring by way of early fall.

Should you’re seeking to entice this huge and delightful butterfly, attempt planting azaleas or jewelweed, that are two of its favourite nectar vegetation. The distinctive caterpillar of the Spicebush Swallowtail likes white sassafras and spicebush, which is the way it obtained its identify.


Spicebush Swallowtails have a singular expertise amongst bugs! They’ll regulate their physique temperature utilizing their coloring, which permits them to be lively at colder temperatures than different swallowtail butterflies in the USA.

#31. Cabbage White

Figuring out Traits:

  • Cabbage White Butterflies have a wingspan of 1.25 to 2 inches.
  • The wings are mild greenish to white, with black wing suggestions and black dots within the heart of every wing. Males have one black dot on both sides, and females have two.
  • Caterpillars, typically referred to as Cabbage Worms, are darkish inexperienced with a light-weight inexperienced stripe alongside the again.


Cabbage White butterflies are well-suited to virtually any habitat in the USA.


The one areas they keep away from are dense forests with little room to fly. You’ll be able to even see this species if you happen to dwell within the metropolis since they usually dwell in very massive metropolitan areas!

Search for Cabbage Whites in the summertime, when they’re most lively and breeding. Their caterpillars, typically referred to as Cabbage Worms, are a pest as a result of they usually overtake and eat cabbage, kale, nasturtium, and different brassica vegetation.


In case you have a vegetable backyard and see Cabbage Whites, you need to pay additional consideration to your vegetation to make sure these hungry bugs don’t spoil them! Actually, Cabbage White butterflies are invasive in the USA. This non-native species was transported right here by way of the meals and agricultural commerce.


Because it’s so well-suited to our local weather, its inhabitants has exploded and it’s now thought of one of the vital damaging invasive species to crops. 


#32. Orange Sulphur

Figuring out Traits:

  • Orange Sulphur Butterflies have a wingspan of 1.5 to 2.5 inches.
  • Their coloring is vibrant yellow-orange with black borders on the wings and irregular black spots.


Search for Orange Sulfur butterflies in the USA alongside sunny roadsides, meadows, and gardens.


Its most well-liked meals and host plant is Alfalfa, which is the way it obtained the nickname “Alfalfa butterfly”.

The simplest method to acknowledge an Orange Sulphur is by its flight sample. They’ve an erratic, jerky flying fashion and normally keep low to the bottom.


You’re prone to see this ample and widespread species in city and suburban environments throughout the spring and summer season.


#33. Clouded Sulphur

Figuring out Traits:

  • Clouded Sulphur butterflies have a wingspan of 1.75 to 2.75 inches.
  • This species has two shade kinds, one white with a light-weight inexperienced forged, and one yellow. Each morphs have a red-ringed eyespot and pinkish borders on the wings.


Clouded Sulphurs are a few of the commonest butterflies in the USA!


It’s because they’re prolific breeders and are at house in virtually any habitat.

Search for them alongside roadsides, parks, and residential gardens. They’re usually present in the identical space as their carefully associated cousins, the Orange Sulphur. Nonetheless, the erratic, jerky flight fashion of Orange Sulphurs set them other than most different butterfly species. To correctly determine a Clouded Sulphur, search for a “wobbly” flying butterfly.


There are two distinct morphs of the Clouded Sulphur. The white morph is primarily white with a greenish tint, and the yellow morph is sort of solely yellow. Curiously, ONLY females show the white shade morph, and males are all the time yellow.


#34. Cloudless Sulphur

Figuring out Traits:

  • Cloudless Sulphurs have a wingspan of two.2 to 2.8 inches.
  • Their coloring is unmarked, vibrant lemon-yellow.


Cloudless Sulphurs are one of the vital acknowledged butterflies in the USA!


It’s because they’re so widespread and ample of their habitat, and in addition as a result of they aren’t shy round people!

Cloudless Sulphurs are virtually all the time pure yellow, with only some markings on their wings. Generally a small white eyespot ringed in darkish crimson may be noticed on their higher wings.


Sadly, this species has been impacted by habitat loss resulting from overdevelopment. Whereas it isn’t thought of a threatened species, the Cloudless Sulphur isn’t as prolific because it was once. A technique you may assistance is to plant flowers which can be native to your space, which is able to naturally entice these cheerful butterflies!


#35. Little Sulphur

Figuring out Traits:

  • Little Sulphur butterflies have a wingspan of 1 to 1.5 inches.
  • The coloring is vibrant yellow with a black border or wing tip in males. Females have pale yellow wings with darkish speckles and blotches.
  • Caterpillars are deep inexperienced with a skinny cream stripe on both sides.


Search for Little Sulphurs in disturbed open areas like roadsides, vacant heaps, and mountain climbing trails. They’re also referred to as Little Yellows for his or her small dimension and vibrant yellow wings.

To draw them, attempt planting an area number of aster whose nectar this species loves! Their caterpillars use the partridge pea as a number plant, so it’s a welcome addition to any butterfly backyard.


Like many butterflies in the USA, Little Sulphurs may be discovered year-round in heat climates. Additional north, search for this butterfly from late June to early October.

#36. Queen

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are about 3 inches.
  • From above, their coloring is vibrant orange with a black border and plenty of white spots.

Queen butterflies in the USA lay eggs on milkweed vegetation.

The fascinating cause for this comes all the way down to self-preservation! Like different caterpillars, these bugs eat Cardiac Glycosides from the milkweed vegetation. These chemical compounds style dangerous to predators and are carried over to their grownup stage, defending them from being eaten.

Queen butterflies want open and arid areas in the USA near milkweed. Males have a black scale patch that releases pheromones, attracting females to mate with. After mating, the feminine will keep near the realm she discovered the male and lay her eggs close by.

#37. Pipevine Swallowtail

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 2-3 inches.
  • Their coloring is essentially black, with vibrant metallic blue close to the sides and orange and white spots on the underside.

Pipevine Swallowtails continually transfer round in the USA to seek out nectar. They significantly like pink and purple flowers! If you wish to entice these lovely guests, plant nectar-producing flowers like Phlox.

Males actively hunt down females when they’re able to mate. As soon as the feminine mates, she locations her eggs on the undersides of the host plant. After hatching, the caterpillars feed in teams on host vegetation within the Aristolochia household, like Virginia Snakeroot and Dutchman’s pipe.

Like many different butterflies, the Pipevine Swallowtail is unpalatable to birds and different predators.

#38. Fiery Skipper

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 1-1.25 inches.
  • Males are primarily orange with black patches.
  • Females are largely brown with orange patches.

Feminine Fiery Skippers have just one factor on their thoughts: discovering an acceptable habitat to put their eggs. They journey far and extensive, on the lookout for an space with loads of entry to their most well-liked host vegetation, which embody numerous kinds of native grasses.

In distinction, the males sit patiently, ready for a possible feminine to come back to them. These skippers in the USA mate the day they emerge, and after three days, the females lay 50-150 eggs.

Once they aren’t discovering a mate, adults feed on flower nectar. So, your yard backyard beds are a great habitat for these fairly guests!

#39. Grey Buckeye

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 1.5-2.75 inches.
  • From above, their coloring is brown with orange, black, white, and maroon accents.
  • Their hindwings and forewings every have 2 eyespots, however the prime eyespot is commonly blurry.

Search for Grey Buckeye butterflies in the USA in heat and sunny clearings.

Each men and women perch on the bottom or on quick grass. Nonetheless, it may be troublesome to get a very good look as a result of this species is extraordinarily jumpy. They’re alert to the smallest motion and can rapidly fly away.

However their jumpiness isn’t an indication of weak spot! Amazingly, Grey Buckeyes can nonetheless fly with solely one-third of their wing capability if they’re attacked and lose elements of their wings.

Grey Buckeyes aren’t simply robust relating to predators. Generally, a feminine will reject a male by lifting her stomach upward, stopping the male from pairing along with her. It may be a tricky blow to a male who’s been trying to find a mate! Nonetheless, if the feminine accepts the male, she lays every of her eggs by itself on a number plant, which incorporates a number of kinds of wildflowers and native bushes.

#40. Gulf Fritillary

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 2-4 inches.
  • From above, they’re sensible orange with black streaks and speckled brown with white or silvery dots beneath.

Gulf Fritillaries are frequent in butterfly gardens all through the USA.

They like sunny open grasslands, woodlands, or parks as their habitat. One of the best vegetation to draw these vibrant butterflies are ardour vines and Lantana vegetation.

Gulf Fritillaries have a singular mating ritual the place the feminine and male circle round one another whereas the male releases its pheromones. When the feminine settles, the male hovers above her, showering her with extra pheromones. Then, the male settles beside the feminine and flaps his wings, protecting her antennae to guarantee her he is identical species.

After the pair mates, the feminine flies low into vegetation and lays one egg. The feminine continues laying her eggs one after the other on the host plant, normally a ardour vine of the species Passiflora lutea or Passiflora incarnata.

#41. Anise Swallowtail

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 2-3 inches.
  • Their coloring is yellow with black bands on the sides of their forewings. The physique is principally black, with lateral yellow stripes alongside the stomach.
  • Their hindwings are largely yellow, with a yellowish orange eyespot.

Anise Swallowtails want open areas each inland and on the coast. These butterflies in the USA aren’t choosy about the place they dwell!

They use a mating technique referred to as “hill-topping.” That is the place a male perches on a mountain cliff, hilltop, or excessive foliage and waits for a feminine to seek out him. That’s one method to preserve your power whereas discovering a accomplice!

Anise Swallowtail males are aggressive, particularly when breeding, they usually defend their territory by attacking different males to safe a possible mate.

#42. Western Tiger Swallowtail

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 3-4 inches.
  • Their wings are vibrant yellow with broad black stripes alongside the sides. 4 black stripes run parallel throughout every forewing from the entrance to the again.
  • From above, the hindwings are yellow with black stripes and orange and blue spots close to the tail.

Search for these butterflies in the USA close to water.

Western Tiger Swallowtails want being near rivers, streams, and lakes, they usually’re usually seen in gardens, roadside meadows, canyons, and parks.

Western Tiger Swallowtail Vary Map

To discover a mate, males flutter round hilltops or canyons on the lookout for a feminine. After mating, the feminine will deposit her eggs on the leaves of a number plant, normally a willow, cottonwood, or aspen tree. When the caterpillars seem, they instinctively search shelter within the tree’s foliage.

As a deterrent towards predators, the caterpillar has two massive spots on its tail that seem like eyes. Additionally they have a forked organ referred to as a Stinkhorn or Osmeterium, which produces a foul scent to maintain predators away.

#43. Zebra Swallowtail

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 2.5-3.5 inches.
  • They’ve a crimson patch on the base of the physique and a crimson stripe on every hindwing.
  • Specimens that emerge in summer season are black with massive white bars that seem like the stripes on a Zebra.
  • Specimens that emerge in spring are smaller and have the identical sample, however the white is considerably bolder.

Zebra Swallowtails are one of the vital lovely butterflies in the USA!

They’re simply recognizable and well-loved by butterfly fanatics. Its distinct shade, sample, and lengthy tails make it one of the vital sought-after species.

Zebra Swallowtail Vary Map

Zebra Swallowtails want broadleaf woodlands, swamps, the sting of rivers, and locations the place the pawpaw tree is ample. Generally these butterflies will stray from their most well-liked habitat into open fields to seek out nectar.

These lovely butterflies could look pretty, however they’ve a smelly secret when they’re caterpillars! The larvae have an orange gland referred to as an Osmeterium. When a predator threatens the Zebra Swallowtail, the gland releases a robust odor that repels predators.

#44. Zebra Longwing

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 3-3.5 inches.
  • The hindwings, additionally referred to as closed wings, are black with yellow stripes and have small crimson spots.
  • They’ve lengthy black forewings with yellow stripes.

Search for these butterflies in the USA in coastal woodlands.

The Zebra Longwing produces a number of generations yearly as a result of their habitat can assist year-round mating.

These butterflies have an extended lifespan than most different butterflies due to their uncommon weight-reduction plan. Adults feed on POLLEN and nectar, which offer people with sufficient vitamins to outlive as much as three months. In distinction, most butterflies that feed solely on nectar dwell for about three weeks.

Along with their uncommon weight-reduction plan, the Zebra Longwing has an attention-grabbing feeding behavior referred to as entice lining. The butterfly visits the identical vegetation in a repeating sample, much like a trapper checking baits. It’s mostly noticed in hummingbirds!

#45. Horace’s Duskywing

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 1.5-1.75 inches.
  • Males are darkish brown with a small white scale and a touch of yellow on its costal fold.
  • Females are mild brown with a definite sample of huge spots.
  • Each sexes are brown beneath and have dim spots alongside the margin.

Horarce’s Duskywing butterflies have a fast, darting flight that’s straightforward to acknowledge. They like open fields, oak woodlands, and dust roadsides with partial solar.

Males are best to identify as a result of they usually perch on slopes and hilltops, patiently ready for a feminine. Search for them about one foot from the bottom.

The caterpillars cowl themselves in leaf nests and feed on saplings, and the final brood will hibernate by way of the winter. So, it’s doable that this can be one of many first butterflies you see within the spring!

#46. Japanese Big Swallowtail

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 4-6.5 inches.
  • From above, their coloring is darkish brown to black with a broad horizontal yellow line that crosses the forewings.
  • Beneath, the wings are yellow with black highlights. The hindwings are black with a sloping yellow line and yellow tails edged with black.

It’s straightforward to identify these large butterflies in the USA!

Japanese Big Swallowtails want forests with deciduous bushes, suburban gardens, and meadows with many flowers. Their massive dimension and hanging yellow and black coloring make them welcome guests in backyards.

Males are very lively and continually fly round host vegetation searching for a feminine. As soon as the male finds a mate, he attracts the feminine till mating begins. Females lay their eggs on the ends of a number plant’s leaves.

The Japanese Big Swallowtail’s larvae seem like a small brown snake. Due to the larvae’s massive dimension, it’s troublesome to cover, and predators can simply spot it. Fortunately it has a secret weapon referred to as an Osmeterium.

When the larvae really feel threatened, it assumes the posture of a snake and inflates its Osmeteria behind its head. The inflated Osmeterium is orange/crimson with a Y-shape that appears like a snake’s tongue and produces a foul odor to discourage predators.

#47. Two-Tailed Swallowtail

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 3-6.5 inches.
  • From above, their coloring is yellow with black stripes. The hindwings have blue marks and a tiny orange eyespot, in addition to skinny black stripes and two tails per wing.
  • Females have extra blue markings and a brighter yellow shade.

Two-Tailed Swallowtail butterflies in the USA want areas with open area and loads of daylight. Search for them in foothills, canyons, valleys, woodlands, roadsides, parks, cities, and suburb gardens.

Males of this species spend their whole life discovering a feminine to mate with resulting from their quick lifespan. If it takes a very long time to discover a mate, males seek for vitamins in rotten materials, dust, and typically feces, an odd conduct referred to as mud puddling.

Though it’s one of the vital recognizable options, the Two-tailed Swallowtail doesn’t want its tails to fly. As a substitute, they’re usually used to flee predators. When a predator assaults the Swallowtail and grabs onto its tails, they break off, and the butterfly can escape.

#48. Frequent Checkered-Skipper

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 0.75-1.25 inches.
  • Their coloring is light white with tan-colored bands and a black or brown edge on the hindwing. From above, they’ve a particular black and white checkered sample.
  • Females are darker in shade.
  • Males are extensively lined with lengthy, bluish-white hairs on the physique.

It’s straightforward to see how this butterfly in the USA obtained its identify.

The Frequent Checkered-Skipper has a particular block sample on its wings that appears like a checkerboard.

Frequent Checkered-Skipper Vary Map

Its favourite host plant is Mallow, and it prefers pastures, open fields, and disturbed websites. This species is commonly seen subsequent to roads.

Males get your hands on an acceptable feminine to mate with, after which she lays her pale inexperienced eggs on the comfortable elements of the hostplant. As soon as the caterpillar emerges, it feeds on the host plant and curls the leaves round it for winter safety.

#49. Checkered White

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 1-2 inches.
  • Males are white darkish gray markings on the forewings.
  • Females are grayish-white with darkish checkers on each the fore- and hindwings.
  • Each sexes have white hindwings with grey, yellow, and brown markings.

Checkered White butterflies are frequent in the USA.

Some of the fascinating traits of this butterfly is its skill to make use of UV alerts to speak. These wonderful bugs can inform the distinction between men and women of their species based mostly on the UV radiation they offer off! If a feminine notices that there are numerous different females, she is going to migrate to a much less dense inhabitants in hopes of attracting a mate.

Checkered White Vary Map

Checkered White females lay their eggs on the host vegetation’ fruits and typically the stems. The larvae want to eat the flower or fruit of the host plant as an alternative of the leaves. This butterfly prefers open and sunny areas like deserts and plains, and it’s usually present in vacant heaps, airports, railroads, and dry grassland.

#50. Weidemeyer’s Admiral

butterflies in the united states

Figuring out Traits:

  • Grownup wingspans are 2.25-3.75 in.
  • Their coloring is white and black with a row of white dots unfold throughout the wing. Seen from beneath, the Weidemeyer’s Admiral is brown with white shapes on the wings.

It may be laborious to identify this shy butterfly in the USA!

Weidemeyer’s Admirals want forests that seasonally shed leaves. This distinctive, simply spooked butterfly can be discovered close to canyons, shrubby streams, and ravines.

Males are territorial and spend a lot of the day ready to intercept a feminine. They perch six to eight ft above the bottom on bushes or shrubs and assault different males who come too shut. Sometimes the male will patrol his territory to discover a feminine.

After mating, the feminine will discover a appropriate host plant and lay her eggs on the tip of its leaves. The Weidemeyer’s Admiral is definitely recognized as a result of distinctive patterns on its wings that seem like army insignia.

Do you want extra assist figuring out butterflies in the USA?


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