Home

 

 
Butterflies of Mexico, USA & Canada
Northwestern Fritillary
Speyeria hesperis  EDWARDS, 1864
Family - NYMPHALIDAE
subfamily - HELICONIINAE
Tribe - ARGYNNINI
subtribe -
Speyeria hesperis beani male, Castle Junction, Alberta, Canada Chris Orpin
Introduction
There are 16 species in the genus Speyeria, all of which are found in the USA. Only 2 species have ranges that extend beyond the USA - hydaspe which reaches Canada, and nokomis which reaches central Mexico.
All Speyeria species are large and noble butterflies. Males of most taxa have bright golden-orange uppersides marked with black spots, and dark streaks of androconial scales along the veins of the forewings, although these are barely discernible in aphrodite. In females the ground colour is more subdued, typically pale buff coloured with a slight greenish tinge. In both sexes the underside fore-wings are similar to the uppersides. On the underside, the hindwings of most species are spangled with numerous large silver ( or sometimes yellow ) spots.
Speyeria hesperis occurs in the USA in the Rocky Mountains and Big Horn Mountains. In Canada it occurs in British Colombia and Alberta. There are 21 named subspecies.
Habitats
Speyeria hesperis breeds in forest edge habitats and woodland clearings, in meadows and glades, often in the vicinity of streams.
Lifecycle
The eggs are pale yellow when first laid but later turn brownish. They are laid singly on dry stems in the vicinity of the larval foodplants. The larva hatches in late summer and immediately enters hibernation. It awakens in early spring and feeds on tender young leaves of Viola ( Violaceae ). The fully grown larva is black with yellow dorsal and lateral spikes. The pupa is dark brown with black mottling on the thorax and abdomen. It is suspended by the cremaster from a stem.
Adult behaviour
Both sexes nectar at a wide range of flowers but favour Aster, Cirsium and Carduus.
Speyeria hesperis female, Teton Pass, Wyoming, USA Frank Model
 

 

Contact  /  About me

Butterfly-watching holidays

Trip reports

UK latest sightings

Frequently asked questions

Strange but true !

Taxonomy & Evolution

Anatomy

Lifecycle

Enemies of butterflies

Survival strategies

Migration & dispersal

Habitats - UK / Palaearctic

Habitats - Tropical rainforests

Butterfly world census

Butterflies of the World :

British Isles

Europe

Amazon & Andes

North America

temperate Asia

Africa

Indian subcontinent

Malaysia & Borneo

Papua New Guinea

Australia & N.Z.

Insects of Britain & Europe

Insects of Amazonia

Moths of the Andes

Saturniidae - Silkmoths

Caterpillars of the World

Butterfly Photography

Recommended Books

Glossary

Links

Code of practice

Copyright - text & images

Copyright - text & images

X

X

X

X

 

All photographs, artwork, text & website design are the property of Adrian Hoskins ( unless otherwise stated ) and are protected by Copyright. Photographs or text on this website must not be reproduced in part or in whole or published elsewhere without prior written consent of Adrian Hoskins / learnaboutbutterflies.com

Site hosted by Just Host