Red-spotted Admiral

I’ve decided to re-launch this blog by focusing on logging my ongoing efforts to expand my skills as an amateur naturalist. Posts will focus on things I’ve seen in the Piedmont area of Georgia (since I’m spending most of my time at home during the pandemic) and have learned a little about. Today’s entry is the Red-spotted Admiral butterfly (Limenitis arthemis).

This picture was taken at the edge of the woods behind our house on a young Liriodendron tulipifera (known as tulip poplar, yellow poplar or tulip tree). This butterfly’s larvae are partial to the leaves of the Black Cherry tree (Prunus serotina), which grows quite liberally in the woods as well, with several small ones near this tulip tree.

The Red-spotted Admiral is an example of mimicry in the insect world. Its color patterns resemble the colors of the not-so-tasty Pipevine Swallowtail, making birds think that the Admiral isn’t as tasty as it actually is.

There is a tremendous amount of interesting things to learn just in our own backyards, and it doesn’t take much more than an online search or visit to Wikipedia to start getting some basic information about animals, plants, and insects that we’ve all taken for granted. As I learn more about the life around me, it inspires me to do more to support its continuing existence.

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