Common Names in English:
Green Skipper, Red-Spotted Admiral, Red-Spotted Purple, Red-Spotted Purple Astyanax, Red-spotted Purple or White Admiral, Western White Admiral, White Admiral, White Admiral/Western White Admiral/Red
'The Nymphalidae are members
of the Superfamily
Papilionoidea, the true butterflies. Distributed worldwide, butterflies of this family
are especially rich in the tropics. They are highly variable, and there are more species in this family than in any other. Adults
vary in size from small to large, and their front legs
are reduced, unable to be used for walking. Wing
is also highly variable: some species have irregular margins
(anglewings and commas), and others have long taillike projections (daggerwings). Browns, oranges, yellows, and blacks are frequent colors, while iridescent
colors such as purples and blues are rare. Adults of some groups are the longest-lived butterflies, surviving 6-11 months. Adult feeding behavior depends on the species, where some groups primarily seek flower nectar while others only feed
, rotting fruit, dung, or animal carcasses. Males exhibit
behaviors when seeking mates. Egg-laying
varies widely, as some species lay eggs
in clustsers, others in columns, and others singly. Caterpillar appearance
and behavior vary widely. Brushfoots overwinter
as larvae or adults.
The Limenitidinae are members of the Family Nymphalidae. These admirals and relatives are found on most continents. Adults of most genera are characterized by their flap-and-glide flight. Caterpillar and chrysalis structure defines this group.
Species Limenitis arthemis
These two very different forms had once been considered separate species. WHITE ADMIRAL: Upperside is black with broad white median bands on both wings ; hindwing has a marginal row of blue dashes and a submarginal row of red dots. Underside is reddish-brown with white median bands as on the upperside. RED-SPOTTED PURPLE: Upperside is blue to blue-green with much iridescence on the outer part of the hindwing. Underside is dark brown. Forewing has 2 red-orange bars near the base of the leading edge ; hindwing has 3 red-orange spots near the base and a submarginal row of red-orange spots. The two forms hybridize where their ranges overlap, creating various intermediate forms which may be found in or near the overlap zone. (ref. 105980)
White Admiral: Upperside is black with broad white median
has a marginal
of blue dashes and a submarginal
row of red dots. Underside is reddish-brown with white median bands
as on the upperside.
Red-Spotted Purple: Upperside is blue to blue-green with much iridescence on the outer part of the hindwing. Underside is dark brown. Forewing has 2 red-orange bars near the base of the leading edge ; hindwing has 3 red-orange spots near the base and a submarginal row of red-orange spots.
The two forms hybridize where their ranges overlap, creating various intermediate forms which may be found in or near the overlap zone.
Wing span : 2 1/4 - 4 inches (5.7 - 10.1 cm).
The White Admiral form is usually found in the north in deciduous broad-leaf or mixed evergreen forests dominated by aspen or birch. The Red-Spotted Purple form is usually found further south than the White Admiral, in deciduous or mixed forests, moist uplands , valley bottoms , and coastal plains .
Typically found at an altitude of 0 to 2,145 meters (0 to 7,037 feet).
Ecology: The Red-spotted Purple is a mimic of the poisonous Pipevine Swallowtail (Battus philenor), and hence gains protection from predacious birds. It is thought the red-spotted purple hybridizes with the white admiral butterfly to produce partially banded offspring. Many lepidopterists consider the two to be one species.
Caterpillar hosts: Leaves of many species of trees and shrubs including wild cherry (Prunus), aspen, poplar, cottonwood (Populus), oaks (Quercus), hawthorn (Crataegus), deerberry (Vaccinium stamineum), birch (Betula), willows (Salix), basswood (Tilia), and shadbush (Amelanchier). Adult food: Sap flows , rotting fruit, carrion , dung, and occasionally nectar from small white flowers including spiraea, privet, and viburnum. White Admirals also sip aphid honeydew.
Males perch 3 feet or more above the ground on trees and tall bushes and rarely patrol for females. Eggs are laid singly on tips of host plant leaves; caterpillars eat leaves. Third-stage caterpillars hibernate. Caterpillar is humped, cream-colored, with dark-colored saddle . Two conspicuous brushlike bristles behind the head . Willows, aspens, poplars, cherry, hawthorns, apples and hornbeams are host plants.
- Whittaker & Margulis,1978
- C. Linnaeus, 1758
- (Hatschek, 1888) Cavalier-Smith, 1983
- Grobben, 1908
- A.M.A. Aguinaldo et al., 1997 ex T. Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Latreille, 1829
- Snodgrass, 1938
- Heymons, 1901
- Order: Lepidoptera () - C. Linnaeus, 1758 - Butterflies and Moths
- Superorder: Panorpida ()
- Cohort: Myoglossata ()
- Infraclass: Pterygota ()
- Subclass: Dicondylia ()
- Epiclass: Hexapoda ()
- Superclass: Panhexapoda ()
- Infraphylum: Atelocerata () - Heymons, 1901
- Subphylum: Mandibulata () - Snodgrass, 1938
- Phylum: Arthropoda () - Latreille, 1829 - Arthropods
- Superphylum: Panarthropoda () - Cuvier
- Infrakingdom: Ecdysozoa () - A.M.A. Aguinaldo et al., 1997 ex T. Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Branch: Protostomia () - Grobben, 1908
- Subkingdom: Bilateria () - (Hatschek, 1888) Cavalier-Smith, 1983
- Kingdom: Animalia () - C. Linnaeus, 1758 - animals
Name Status: Accepted Name .
Members of the genus Limenitis
ZipcodeZoo has pages for 17 species and subspecies in this genus:
L. archippus (Viceroy) · L. archippus archippus (Viceroy) · L. archippus idaho (Idaho Viceroy) · L. archippus lahontani (Nevada Viceroy) · L. archippus obsoleta (Arizona Viceroy) · L. arthemis (Green Skipper) · L. arthemis arizonensis (Arizona Red-Spotted Purple) · L. arthemis arthemis (White Admiral) · L. arthemis astyanax (Astyanax Red-Spotted Purple) · L. arthemis rubrofasciata (White Admiral) · L. lorquini (Lorquin's Admiral) · L. lorquini pallidafacies (Lorquin's Admiral) · L. populi (Poplar Admiral) · L. weidemeyerii (Weidemeyer's Admiral) · L. weidemeyerii nevadae (Nevada Admiral) · L. weidemeyerii oberfoelli (Weidemeyer's Admiral) · L. weidermeyerii (Weidemeyer's Admiral)
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Accessed through GBIF Data Portal February 26, 2008:
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, St. Johns, Newfoundland
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Atlantic Forestry Centre Insect Reference Collection
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Butterflies and Skippers of Alberta Project
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Canadian National Collection (CNC) of Insects, Arachnids and Nematodes
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Crispin S. Guppy Collection
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Donald F. Hooper Butterfly collection, Canada
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Jeff Ogden Collection
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Lyman Entomological Museum
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Manitoba Museum of Man and Nature
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Memorial University Department of Biology Collection
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: New Brunswick Museum Collection
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Norbert Kondla Collection
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resources, Subenacadie, NS, Canada
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History, Halifax, NS, Canada
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Ross A. Layberry Observations
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Royal Ontario Museum: Entomology
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: University of New Brunswick Collection
- Biodiversity Heritage Library NamebankID: 2766286
- Catalogue of Life Accepted Name Code: Lep-160377.0
- Global Biodiversity Information Facility Taxonkey: 4490920
- Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) Taxonomic Serial Number (TSN): 188603
- Natural Heritage Network Species Identifier: IILEPL3010
- Zipcode Zoo Species Identifier: 15058
- http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/taxonomy?f=18&sci=Nymphalidae&com=Brush-footed Butterflies [back]
- http://bugguide.net/index.php?q=search&keys=None&search=Search [back]
- Mean = 512.550 meters (1,681.594 feet), Standard Deviation = 522.640 based on 197 observations. Altitude information for each observation from British Oceanographic Data Centre. [back]