White admiral (Limenitis arthemis arthemis)

white admiral

Photo by Bill Reynolds

White admiral (Limenitis arthemis arthemis) is a common, large, brush-footed butterfly. In is found in forest edges and openings, on trails, and on roadsides. It is often seen sunning itself on gravel roads. Caterpillars are found mostly on birch, willow, quaking aspen, and chokecherry but sometimes also on other trees. Adults feed mostly on sap flows, rotting fruit, aphid honeydew, carrion, and dung, rarely on flower nectar. The appearance of this butterfly is distinctive and there are no similar butterflies in Minnesota. However, the range overlaps that of the red-spotted purple in the lower third of the state. Where the ranges overlap the subspecies interbreed and produce offspring with intergrading characteristics.


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