Limenitis archippus floridensis, The Florida Viceroy

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Limenitis archippus floridensis, The Florida Viceroy

Freshly emerged female

Description: 33-42 mm. This is a brownish-orange butterfly with thick black margins and black veination. There is a thin row of white spots in the outer margin. and on the dorsal forewings, there is a black stripe with white spots inside. This species resembles the queen but its habits likely will help differentiate in the field in flight as the viceroy has a more powerful flight. Queens lack the heavy black veination on the dorsal side. 

 

Habitat and Distribution: The viceroy lives in a variety of habitats throughout much of the United States. In Florida, it can be abundant in fresh water wetlands where its host is present. It has been reported from Key Largo and Elliot Key

 

Host Plant: Willows (Salix caroliniana)

 

Natural History: The viceroy has only been recorded a few times in the Keys and should be concidered a rare stray. It is not known to breed in the Keys.

 

Limenitis archippus floridensis, The Florida Viceroy

Freshly emerged female

Limenitis archippus floridensis, The Florida Viceroy egg

Eggs

Limenitis archippus floridensis, The Florida Viceroy larva

Final instar larva

Limenitis archippus floridensis, The Florida Viceroy pupa

Chrysalis

Limenitis archippus floridensis, The Florida Viceroy

female laying eggs

Limenitis archippus floridensis, The Florida Viceroy

Freshly emerged female

Limenitis archippus floridensis, The Florida Viceroy larva

Final instar larva

Salix Carolinensis (willow) - larval host

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