Butterflies of Indiana: A Field Guide

Butterflies of Indiana: A Field Guide

by Jeffrey E. Belth

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780253009555
Publisher: Indiana University Press
Publication date: 01/07/2013
Series: Indiana Natural Science Series
Pages: 344
Sales rank: 532,118
Product dimensions: 4.50(w) x 7.50(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Jeffrey E. Belth, a lifelong lover of butterflies and entomology, has been photographing butterflies in Indiana for 25 years.

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Butterflies of Indiana

A Field Guide


By Jeffrey E. Belth

Indiana University Press

Copyright © 2013 Jeffrey E. Belth
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-253-00963-0



CHAPTER 1

The Plates


Swallowtails
Whites and Sulphurs
Gossamer-wings and Metalmarks
Brushfoots
Spread-wing Skippers
Grass Skippers
Moths
Immature Stages
Larval Hosts and Nectar Sources


Swallowtails

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus glaucus)

Identification:

1 Male yellow with black stripes

2 Female similar, but more extensive blue on hindwing

3 Forewing with row of yellow spots

4 Underside pale yellow with dark stripes (sexes similar)

Habitat: Woodlands, fields, yards, gardens

Larval hosts: Tulip Poplar (Liriodendron tulipifera) [159], Black Cherry (Prunus serotina) [163], and many other trees

Notes: Common. Females occur in two color forms. Yellow form "turnus" is more common in northern Indiana than dark form"glaucus" [7,9].


Appalachian Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio appalachiensis)

Identification:

1 Males striped similar to Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, but wings much larger

2 Females similar but with more blue (but less blue than female Eastern Tiger)

3 Hindwing longer and more angular than Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

4 Forewing underside yellow spots merge to form a continuous band

5 Hindwing spots rectangular, less crescent-shaped than Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

6 Hindwing scallops angular, less curved than Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

Habitat: Woodlands and woodland openings

Larval hosts: Black Cherry (Prunus serotina) [163], and possibly other trees

Notes: A recently described species from the southern Appalachians (Pavulaan and Wright 2002, 2004) that may occur in southern Indiana. Eastern Tigers have several flights per year, including one in spring, from April to early May. Appalachian Tigers have only one, emerging in mid to late May as the first flight of Eastern Tigers disappears. Although the heart of the Appalachian Tigers' range is in the Appalachians, recent sightings suggest its range may be similar to Dusky Azure [25], an Appalachian species which occurs in Indiana. I have seen swallowtails with some of the above traits in Perry County, but whether a population of Appalachian Tigers exists there or if they are variants of Eastern Tiger needs further study. Emergence times and pattern variations within a swallowtail population must be known before identifying Appalachian Tigers. As with Eastern Tiger, there is a dark form female [7,9].


Zebra Swallowtail (Eurytides marcellus)

Identification:

1White with black stripes

2 Hindwing with red spots (size of spots varies by season)

3 Tails long (length of tail and amount of white on tail varies by season)

Habitat: Woodlands, woodland edges

Larval hosts: Pawpaw (Asimina triloba) [159]

Notes: Adults appear in three successive flights, marked by slight differences in size and pattern. The first, form "marcellus," with comparatively short tails and large red spots on the upperside hindwing, are some of the first butterflies to appear in spring, usually in early to mid-April. The second, form "telamonides," fly in May and have longer tails and less red. Form "lecontei," flying in June through August, have even longer tails and little, if any, red.


Black Swallowtail (Papilio polyxenes asterius)

Identification, upperside: (underside, see page 9)

1 Black, with two rows of yellow spots

2 Female similar to male but with smaller yellow spots

3 Female similar to male but with more blue on hindwing

4 Underside orange band not broken by blue (see also page 9)

Habitat: Old fields, roadsides, gardens

Larval hosts: Queen Anne's Lace (Daucus carota) [153], Parsnip (Pastinaca sativa), and other carrots (Apiaceae)

Notes: Females (and the underside of males) mimic the Pipevine Swallowtail (Poulton 1909; Codella and Lederhouse 1989). Often found in gardens, where the larvae eat parsley, fennel, dill, and other carrots. Many plants in the carrot family (Apiaceae) possess toxic compounds which inhibit growth and are lethal to most larvae and some mammals. Black Swallowtail larvae, however, possess enzymes which negate the effects of these compounds. In fact, larvae grow larger and faster on carrots with higher levels of the toxic compounds (Berenbaum 1981). It is not known if these toxins are stored in the larvae and adults as they are in Pipevine Swallowtails, but it is known that larvae are distasteful to birds (Berenbaum 1990). The striped pattern of the older larvae include black and orange, two colors often displayed by poisonous insects.


Giant Swallowtail (Papilio cresphontes)

Identification:

Our largest swallowtail

1 Upperside brown, with two rows of yellow spots

2 Underside yellow, without black stripes

Habitat: Woodlands, fields, stream sides, gardens

Larval hosts: Prickly Ash (Zanthoxylum americanum) [163] and Hop Tree (Ptelea trifoliata)

Notes: A spectacular, but uncommon, species. The larvae feed on plants in the Rue family (Rutaceae), such as oranges (Citrus). In the southern states, where this species is far more common, the larvae can be minor pests in orange groves. In addition to Prickly Ash and Hop Tree, two native trees in the Rutaceae, larvae can also be found on Common Rue (Ruta graveolens), a European garden herb. Rue can be grown in our gardens, and can also occasionally be found in waste places and along roadsides where it has escaped from cultivation.


Spicebush Swallowtail (Papilio troilus troilus)

Identification:

1 Hindwing of male with pale green patch

2 Hindwing of male with pale green spots on margin

3 Hindwing of female with pale blue patch

4 Hindwing of female with pale blue spots on margin

5 Underside orange band broken by blue (see also page 9)

Habitat: Woodland edges, yards, gardens

Larval hosts: Sassafras (Sassafras albidum) [159] and Spicebush (Lindera benzoin)

Notes: A mimic of the Pipevine Swallowtail (Poulton 1909).


Pipevine Swallowtail (Battus philenor philenor)


Identification:

1 Hindwing of male metallic bluish-green, female duller

2 Hindwing with single row of small white spots

3 Underside with single row of orange spots (see also page 9)

Habitat: Woodlands, woodland edges

Larval hosts: Pipevine (Aristolochia macrophylla), and Virginia Snakeroot (Aristolochia serpentaria) [151]

Notes: Most common in southern Indiana, less common northward. The adults are distasteful to birds due to toxins in the larval host (Sime, Feeny, and Haribal 2000). Since birds learn to avoid this butterfly's color pattern, other species mimic it for protection (Brower 1958).


Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus glaucus), female, dark form "glaucus"


Identification:

Distinctly larger than other dark swallowtails

1 Hindwing iridescent blue

2 Hindwing with yellowish spots on margin

3 Underside hindwing with faint tiger stripe (see also page 9)

Habitat: Woodlands, fields, yards, gardens

Larval hosts: Tulip Poplar (Liriodendron tulipifera) [159], Black Cherry (Primus serotina) [163], and many other trees

Notes: Female Eastern Tiger Swallowtails occur in two color forms. The dark form "glaucus" mimics the Pipevine Swallowtail (Poulton 1909). In southern Indiana, where Pipevine Swallowtails are abundant, the dark form is by far the most common form. In northern Indiana, where Pipevine Swallowtails are less common, the yellow form "turnus" [3] dominates. There is also a dark form female Appalachian Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio appalachiensis), which could possibly occur in southern Indiana. They are larger with much less blue on the upperside of the hindwing (Pavulaan and Wright 2004).


Black Swallowtail (Papilio polyxenes asterius)

Identification, underside: (upperside: see page 5)

1 Hindwing with two rows of orange spots

2 Hindwing inner row of orange spots not broken by blue

Habitat: Old fields, roadsides, gardens

Flight Period: April to September


Spicebush Swallowtail (Papilio troilus troilus)

Identification, underside: (upperside: see page 7)

1 Hindwing with two rows of orange spots

2 Hindwing inner row of orange spots broken by blue

Habitat: Woodland edges, yards, gardens

Flight Period: April to September


Pipevine Swallowtail (Battus philenor philenor)

Identification, underside: (upperside: see page 7) 1 Hindwing with single row of orange spots

Habitat: Woodlands, woodland edges

Flight Period: April to September


Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus glaucus) female, dark form "glaucus"

Identification, underside: (upperside: see page 7)

Distinctly larger than other dark swallowtails (except Appalachian Tiger)

1 Hindwing with single row of orange spots

2 Faint tiger stripe pattern

Habitat: Woodlands, fields, yards, gardens

Flight Period: April to September


Appalachian Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio appalachiensis) female, dark form

Identification, underside: (upperside: see page 7)

Even larger than Eastern Tiger Swallowtail; not yet recorded from Indiana

1 Hindwing spots rectangular, less crescent-shaped than Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

2 Hindwing scallops angular, less curved than Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

3 Faint tiger stripe pattern

Habitat: Woodlands and woodland openings

Flight Period: May


Red-spotted Purple (Limenitis arthemis astyanax)

Identification, underside: (upperside: see page 11)

1No tails (but note that tails of swallowtails often break off)

2 Hindwing underside with orange spots at base of wing

3 Form "proserpina" with trace of white band

Habitat: Woodlands, woodland edges

Flight Period: May to August


Red-spotted Purple (Limenitis arthemis astyanax)


Identification:

1 Hindwing upperside iridescent blue, occasionally iridescent green (form "viridis")

2 Hindwing upperside without yellowish spots on margin

3No tails (but note that tails of swallowtails often break off)

4 Hindwing underside with orange spots at base of wing

5Rarely shows trace of white band (see notes below)

6 Flight a leisurely glide on horizontal wings punctuated by occasional wing flaps; swallowtail flight more rapid with regular wingbeats

Habitat: Woodlands, woodland edges

Larval hosts: Black Cherry (Prunus serotina) [163], and poplars (Populus) [159]

Notes: A mimic of the toxic Pipevine Swallowtail (Poulton 1909), the Red-spotted Purple is a subspecies of the White Admiral (Limenitis arthemis arthemis), which is similar but has a white wing band. The presence of the white band is genetically controlled. Populations living within the range of Pipevine Swallowtail suppress the trait for the white band and derive protection from birds by masquerading as a poisonous blue and black swallowtail. These individuals are our "Red-spotted Purples." Populations living north of the Pipevine Swallowtail's range, where birds do not identify a blue and black butterfly as a toxic meal, adopt a different survival strategy. The white band trait is expressed, and the butterfly exhibits disruptive coloration—a contrasting pattern confusing to birds because it disguises the true size and shape of the butterfly. These individuals are "White Admirals." The two subspecies interbreed in a wide blend zone across central Wisconsin, northern Michigan, and southern Ontario. Individuals within this zone often display varying traces of the white band, as in form "proserpina" (Platt and Brower 1968, Platt 1975). The trait for the band is present in our unbanded populations, but the mimicry advantage is so strong it is rarely expressed, so seeing a White Admiral in Indiana, or an individual even with a trace of the white band, is very rare.


Diana Fritillary (Speyeria diana), female

Identification:

Much larger than Red-spotted Purple

1 Hindwing upperside with blue patches

2No tails (but note that tails of swallowtails often break off)

3 Hindwing without orange spots

Habitat: Woodland edges

Larval hosts: Violets (Viola)

Notes: Mimics the Pipevine Swallowtail (Poulton 1909). Sexually dimorphic, the males [55] are orange. Still occurs in Kentucky, but extirpated from Indiana. Found near Evansville in the late 1800s and early 1900s (Blatchley 1892, Weeks 1902). A worn male was found in Perry County on July 15, 1962 (Masters and Masters 1969). For a brief history of the decline of this species in Indiana, see the notes under the discussion of the male [55].


White

Cabbage White (Pieris rapae rapae)

Identification:

1 Forewing with dark tip

2 Forewing with one spot (male) or two spots (female)

3 Forewing spots of spring and fall forms often pale

4 Hindwing pale yellow (summer), gray-green (spring/fall)

Habitat: Fields, yards, gardens, woodlands

Larval hosts: Cabbage (Brassica oleracea), Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata), Yellow Rocket (Barbarea vulgaris) [143], and other mustards

Notes: Abundant; can be a pest on cabbages. Native to the Old World; first introduced to North America at Quebec City in 1860. From there it advanced across the continent: moving south it colonized Maine by 1865 and Massachusetts by 1870; then additional introductions occurred at New York City in 1868 and Charleston in 1873. Moving west, often as a stowaway aboard trains transporting cabbages to market, it arrived in Indianapolis in 1872 and Evansville in 1874 (Scudder 1887). By 1892 when Blatchley compiled the first Indiana checklist, it was common throughout the state, as it is today.


West Virginia White (Pieris virginiensis virginiensis)

Identification:

Flight more buoyant than Cabbage White

1 Forewing unmarked, occasionally with very faint spots

2 Hindwing with faint grayish-green veins

Habitat: Moist forests and moist ravines in dry forests

Larval hosts: Toothworts and bittercresses (Cardamine) [142], rockcresses (Bouchera) [143], and other mustards

Notes: Similar to spring form Cabbage Whites which have pale forewing spots, but note underside hindwing pattern. Uncommon in southern Indiana, apparently absent from the northern counties, although it does occur in central Michigan. West Virginia White has a single flight in early spring; Cabbage White has many flights from spring through fall. Although Cabbage Whites can be seen in woodlands, West Virginia Whites rarely stray from their forest haunts to the gardens and disturbed habitats where Cabbage Whites abound.


Mustard White (Pieris oleracea oleracea)

Identification:

1 Both forms unmarked above, occasionally with faint spots

2 Spring form with distinct grayish-green venation

3 Summer form without venation (or, if present, very faint)

Habitat: Fens and adjacent uplands

Larval host: Watercress (Nasturtium officinale) [143]

Notes: State endangered; rare or uncommon in fens.


Checkered White (Pontia protodice)

Identification:

1 Forewing with central eyespot

2 Hindwing of male usually white; female with pattern

3 Spring and fall forms with grayish-green venation pattern

Habitat: Old fields, grasslands, waste areas, wetland edges

Larval hosts: Shepherd's Purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris) [142], pepperweeds (Lepidium), and other mustards (Brassicaceae)

Notes: Resident of the southern states; usually unable to survive our winters. Immigrants from the south typically arrive by mid-summer or fall, but in varying numbers. However, this species is regularly seen at Hovey Lake in Posey County and on the savannas in Newton County, so possibly a few permanent populations are being maintained in the state. Checkered Whites appear in a variety of seasonal forms. Each form is produced by different photoperiods—or day lengths—affecting the developing larva (Shapiro 1968). The spring form "vernalis" (not illustrated) and fall form are similar—both have a strongly marked venation pattern below—but "vernalis" is smaller. The summer form is paler with less venation pattern below, especially the males.


Olympia Marble (Euchloe olympia)

Identification:

1 Forewing with dark, unhooked, tip

2 Forewing with central eyespot

3 Hindwing with mottled pattern

Habitat: Dunes, savannas

Larval hosts: Sandcress (Arabidopsis lyrata) [143]

Notes: State threatened; occurs on the dunes along the southern shore of Lake Michigan and in the sand savannas of Newton and Benton Counties. No records for southern Indiana, but should be looked for since it occurs in southern Ohio and Kentucky. In southern Ohio, the larval host might be Smooth Rockcress (Boechera laevigata) [143] (Riddlebarger 1984), a plant found in southern Indiana forests.


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Butterflies of Indiana by Jeffrey E. Belth. Copyright © 2013 Jeffrey E. Belth. Excerpted by permission of Indiana University Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Table of Contents

Contents

Quick Key,
The Plates,
Swallowtails,
Whites and Sulphurs,
Gossamer-wings and Metalmarks,
Brushfoots,
Spread-wing Skippers,
Grass Skippers,
Moths,
Immature Stages,
Larval Hosts and Nectar Sources,
The Basics,
Introduction,
Why Butterflies?,
What are Butterflies and Skippers?,
Families of Butterflies and Skippers,
Body Parts of Butterflies and Skippers,
How to Identify Butterflies and Skippers,
The First Question,
The Second Question,
Additional Questions,
Using the Quick Key Boxes,
Using the Plates: Butterflies and Skippers,
The Species Descriptions,
Using the Plates: Moths, Immature Stages, and Larval Hosts and Nectar Sources,
Beyond the Basics,
Indiana and Its Butterflies,
Overview,
The Geologic Foundation,
Natural Regions,
Natural Communities,
Where, When, and How to Look for Butterflies,
Where to Look,
When to Look,
How to Look,
The Life of a Butterfly,
The First Three Stages,
The Final Stage: The Adult,
Wing Patterns,
Butterfly Behavior,
Daily Activities,
Seasonal Activities,
Activities with Butterflies,
Watching Butterflies,
Collecting Butterflies,
Photographing Butterflies,
Keeping Records,
Butterfly Conservation,
How We Reduce Butterfly Populations,
The Importance of Butterflies,
Improving Habitat for Butterflies,
What You Can Do in Your Yard,
Conclusion,
Acknowledgments,
Appendixes,
Appendix A: Checklist of Indiana Butterflies and Skippers,
Appendix B: Organizations of Interest to Butterfly Watchers,
Appendix C: The Lepidopterists' Society Statement on Collecting,
Appendix D: Photograph Data,
Glossary,
Bibliography,
Index,
Quick Index,

What People are Saying About This

Director of Conservation Science, Indiana Chapter of the Nature Conservancy and past president of th - John Shuey

This unique effort is the most complete guide to butterfly watching I've ever seen—with visual identification keys that a true novice can follow, supplemented with accurate status updates, distribution maps and abundance and seasonal graphs. If these were all it included, it would be an admirable accomplishment—but there are another 150 pages devoted to butterfly life history, habitats, conservation, habitat management, gardening, photography, collecting, watching and more. This is the complete guide to the appreciation of Indiana’s butterflies.

author of Wildflowers and Ferns of Indiana Forests: A Field Guide - Michael A. Homoya

My excitement about our state’s butterflies jumped several notches after reading the superbly illustrated Butterflies of Indiana: A Field Guide. It is a must-have book for anyone interested in these jewels of the insect world.

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