Monday, October 18, 2010

More Buckeyes

While we are on the subject of buckeyes I thought I would introduce you to one of a different sort.  The Common Buckeye Junonia coenia is not a tree but a colorful butterfly found in the Captina watershed.  It's getting late in the growing season to encounter live adult butterflies and those that are found are usually a bit tattered.  The common buckeye is a member of the brushfoot family of butterflies including the viceroy, red admiral and mourning cloak among others.  Adults will visit asters and chicory while the caterpillars prefer plaintains as host plants.  Look for buckeyes along utility and transportation right-of-ways and in clearings within wooded stands.

This individual was found along a railway next to the creek.  It still
has decent color despite the damage to its left wing.  Note the distinctive
circular markings on the wings that give the butterfly its name.  The
butterfly sits next to an elm leaf for size comparison.  Much aster was
observed growing nearby.

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