Question Mark

  • Family name: Nymphalidae/Brush-Footed Butterflies
  • General description: Orange with black spots and short hindwing tail; hindwing primarily black in summer-form individuals; wing margins irregular; ventral wing surfaces mottled brown and leaf-like; ventral hindwing with white question mark in center.
  • Field Marks: Orange with black spots and irregular wing margins; hindwing with short tail.
  • Sexes: Appear similarQuestion Mark larva
  • Wingspan: 59-75 mm
  • Life Cycle: Egg: Small, green, laid singly or stacked on top of each other on host leaves Mature larva: Black with cream to orange stripes and spots, and numerous yellow to orange branched spines Chrysalis: Brown with silver dorsal spots
  • Number of Generations: Two generations
  • Flight Season: All yearQuestion Mark ventral
  • Abundance: Common
  • Habitat: Forest margins, woodland openings, swamps, wooded yards, parks
  • Counties: Alachua, Baker, Bay, Bradford, Brevard, Broward, Calhoun, Charlotte, Citrus, Clay, Collier, Columbia, De Soto, Dixie, Duval, Escambia, Flagler, Franklin, Gadsden, Gilchrist, Glades, Gulf, Hamilton, Hardee, Hendry, Hernando, Highlands, Hillsborough, Holmes, Indian River, Jackson, Jefferson, Lafayette, Lake, Lee, Leon, Levy, Liberty, Madison, Manatee, Marion, Martin, Nassau, Okaloosa, Okeechobee, Orange, Osceola, Palm Beach, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk, Putnam, Santa Rosa, Sarasota, Seminole, St. Johns, St. Lucie, Sumter, Suwannee, Taylor, Union, Volusia, Wakulla, Walton, Washington
  • Larval Host Plants: Winged elm (Ulmus alata), Sugarberry (Celtis laevigata), Common Hackberry (Celtis occidentalis)
  • Similar Species: No similar species
  • Additional Information: Adults attracted to fermenting fruit, dung, and sap flows; adults overwinter. Limited range in Arizona.

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