With all the warm weather this week, butterflies are suddenly appearing out of nowhere. Unlike most butterflies, which typically spend the winter as eggs or pupae (inside of chrysalises), red admirals, mourning cloaks and eastern commas (pictured) simply slip out from behind loose bark, where they overwintered as adults, and take to the air. Those species of butterflies which spent the winter as eggs or pupae must undergo metamorphosis this spring, and won’t appear in their adult form until later in the year. With so few wildflowers out now, especially this year, sap from broken tree branches sustains early-emerging butterflies!
March 23, 2012 | Categories: Arthropods, Butterflies, Insects, Lepidoptera, March, Metamorphosis, Signs of Spring | Tags: Butterflies, Eastern Comma, Insect Metamorphosis, Lepidoptera, Mourning Cloak, Nymphalis antiopa, Polygonia comma, Red Admiral, Signs of Spring, Vanessa atalanta | 7 Comments