Red-spotted Purple

Lisa G. Putman

Joined November 2007

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Artist's Description

I spotted my first Red-spotted Purple this year in a woodland area near the Hatchie River near Brownsville, TN.

Limenitis arthemis ~ (Drury, 1773)

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Limenitis arthemis is a North American brush-footed butterfly, common throughout much of the eastern United States. It has red spots on its underwing. The top of the wings are notable for their iridescent blue markings.

The Red-spotted Purple is a mimic of the poisonous Pipevine Swallowtail (Battus philenor) and is typically found in open woodlands and along forest edges.

Preferred host plants: birches, including Betula lenta; Salicaceae, including Salix bebbiana and Populus tremuloides, and Prunus virginiana (Rosaceae).

Also but not as often: Crataegus, Amelanchier, Malus pumila, Prunus pensylvanica and Prunus serotina (Rosaceae), Populus deltoides, P. grandidentata and P. balsamifera (Salicaceae), Alnus rugosa, Betula alleghaniensis and Carpinus caroliniana (Betulaceae), Ulmus americana (Ulmaceae), Tilia americana (Malvaceae) and Fagus grandifolia (Fagaceae).

Adults are diurnal, they fly from the morning until soon after dusk (Fullard & Napoleone 2001).

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
(unranked) Rhopalocera
Superfamily: Papilionoidea
Family: Nymphalidae (Brush-footed Butterflies)
Subfamily: Limenitidinae (Admirals and Relatives)
Genus: Limenitis
Species: L. arthemis

Artwork Comments

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