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Butterfly Migrations
Migration seems to be a general instinct in the animal world, developed when a species becomes enormously abundant. At such times this instinct apparently over-comes all others and the creatures move on regardless of obstacles and conditions that may mean certain death to the vast majority.
Butterflies - Hibernation Or Winter Lethargy
The ways in which butterflies spend the winter are always of peculiar interest to the naturalist. Here are creatures with four distinct stages of existence, each of which has the possibility of carrying the species through the season of cold. It is necessary to learn for each insect which stage has been chosen for the purpose, and if possible to find the reasons for the choice.
Butterflies - Aestivation Or Summer Lethargy
In some species of butterflies there is a special adaptation to passing through the hottest part of the slimmer season in a state of lethargy which is suggestive of the torpor of the hibernating period. This phase of butterfly existence has not been extensively studied and there are indications that it exists more generally than has been commonly supposed.
Butterflies - Feigning Death
The fact has long been noticed that various butterflies have the habit at times of feigning death and dropping to the ground where they may lie motionless for a considersable period. This habit is most easily observed in some of the Angle-wings, especially those which hibernate as adults.
Coloration Of Butterflies
The caterpillars of butterflies and moths form a large part of the food of insect-eating birds. These caterpillars are especially adapted for such a purpose and in the economy of nature they play a very important part in keeping alive the feathered tribes.
Butterflies - Selective Color Sense
One who collects the Underwing moths soon discovers that the light colored species which resemble the bark of birch trees are likely to be found upon the trunks of those trees, and that the dark colored kinds which resemble the bark of maple trees are likely to be found upon the trunks of these.
Butterflies - Warning Coloration And Mimicry
The colors of a great many animals, including a considerable percentage of American butterflies and their larvae, have been commonly explained by the theory of warning colors. According to this theory animals which were for any reason not edible by birds and mammals have developed various striking combinations of color such as black and yellow, red and black, or black and white.
Heliotropism In Butterflies
It has long been known that the green surfaces of plants respond to the stimulus of the sun's rays in a most remarkable manner. This response has commonly been called heliotropism and it has been carefully studied by botanists all over the habitable world.
Butterflies - Parasitic Enemies
All three of the earlier stages of butterflies egg, larva, and chrysalis are subject to attack by various parasitic insects which develop at the expense of the host. Such parasites are probably the most important check upon the increase of butterflies, and along with birds, mammals, and bacterial diseases, they help to keep up that balance of nature.
Rearing Butterflies From Caterpillars
There are few things in the world more interesting to watch than the wonderful changes which a moth or butterfly goes through in the course of its life. You find on a tree or shrub a wormlike caterpillar. You take it in charge, placing it in a box or jar where you can provide leaves for its food.
Photographing Butterflies
There is a famous old saying that to make hare stew it is first necessary to catch your hare. So if one wishes to make perfect pictures of butterflies it is first necessary to get the caterpillars. For though caterpillars are not butterflies they are butterflies in the making and they will show you most interesting stages in nature's manufacture of these dainty and exquisite creatures.
Butterfly Collections
There are few groups in Nature which offer such advantages to the collector as that of the butterflies. They are easily obtained, easily preserved, and retain their beauty for a long period even under exposure to strong light. The mistake most commonly made by beginners with butterflies, as with other collections, is to undertake too much.
True Butterflies
SUPERFAMILY PapilionoideaThe great suborder of butterflies is commonly separated into two principal groups called superfamilies. One of these includes all of the higher butterflies and is named Papilionoidea. The other includes the lower Skipper butterflies and is named the Hesperioidea.
Parnassian Butterflies
It is perhaps a bit unfortunate that the group of butterflies, which is commonly chosen to head the list of families, is one that is rarely seen by most collectors. The Parnassians are butterflies of the far north or of high elevations in the mountains.
Butterflies - The Swallowtails
This is probably the most distinctive family of all our familiar butterflies. Its members are characterized by being on the whole the largest butterflies in our region and by having the hind wings prolonged into curious tail-like projections, suggestive of those of a swallow.
Butterflies - The Swallowtails Continued
The transformation of a chrysalis into a butterfly is always one of extraordinary interest. Comparatively few definite descriptions of this process have been given by careful observers. One of the best of these is that written by Mr. Scudder in connection with the emergence of this butterfly, and it is so accurate and complete that it seems worth while to quote it at length.
Butterflies - Whites, Orange-tips, And Yellows
The most familiar and abundant American butterflies are classified together under the family name Pieridae, or the Pierids. Three groups or tribes of them are popuarly known as the Whites, the Orange-tips, and the Yellows. Our two commonest butterflies, the White or Imported Cabbage Butterfly and the Sulphur Yellow Butterfly, are typical representatives of this family.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Orange-tips
When one sees a gossamer-winged butterfly flitting from flower to flower on a bright June day it seems one of the most ethereal of earth's visions. One could readily fancy that the whole sight flowers, butterflies, and all might easily vanish into thin air.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Yellows
A large proportion of our most abundant and conspicuous butterflies belong to the Tribe of the Yellows. Sometimes it is called the Tribe of the Red-horns because the antennae of the living insects are so often red. These insects vary in size from the large Brimstones or Cloudless Sulphurs, expanding three inches, to the delicate little Dainty Sulphur, expanding scarcely an inch.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Yellows Continued
The Black bordered Yellow Eurema nicippeThis is essentially a tropical butterfly which has spread out over most of our Southern states where it is abundant and widely distributed. It adds a distinct touch of color and life to many landscapes when the butterflies swarm by thousands upon clover blossoms and other low vegetation.
Butterflies - The Nymphs
A large proportion of our most familiar butterflies belongs to this family. The Fritillaries, the Angle-wings, the Sovereigns, and the Emperors are tribes in which practically all the species are of medium or large size. The Crescent-spots include a few which are rather small.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Fritillaries
This is one of the most distinctive tribes of the family of Nymphs. The clubs of the antennae are about twice as long as broad and curiously spoon-shaped, The palpi are large and bushy, with the last joint very short. Most of the species are rather large and practically all are beautifully mottled in various tones of brown, red, black, and silvery gray.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Fritillaries Continued
If one were able to take a Silver-spot Fritillary and reduce its size about one third he would have a wonderfully good imitation of the present species. Except for the size, about the only difference in the markings is found in the blackish border along the margins of the Mountain Silver-spot which is not present in the other species.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Crescent Spots
The members of this tribe have the following combinations of characters: scaly antennae, with a short stout club some three times as long as broad, and a pair of slender palpi in which the terminal joint is only about half as long as the middle one. There may or may not be a slight ridge running lengthwise of the naked part of the antennal club.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Angle-wings
The special characteristic that distinguishes the members of this important group from the other Nymphs is the fact that on that portion of the club of each antenna which has not hairs there are three longitudinal ridges. The tribe includes a large number of our most familiar butterflies. Nearly all of them are rather large, with bright attractive colors.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Angle-wings Continued
Among the weedy plants which have been intimately associated with mankind ever since his slow upward progress in civilization began, the nettle has probably played almost as important a part as the thistle. While it lacks the winged seeds of the latter it is even more effectually protected from the attacks of vertebrate enemies on account of its irritating hairs.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Angle-wings Continued
One of the most scholarly students of American insects has happily called the butterflies 'the frail children of the air.' It seems a fitting term for creatures so ethereal that they are readily wafted on the wings of the slightest breeze and so delicate in structure that they are likely to be sadly mutilated by the lightest touch of human hand.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Angle-wings Continued
This beautiful butterfly is one of the most distinctive of all our species. It is of moderate size, its wings rarely expanding more than two inches, and it has sufficiently irregular outlines to indicate its relationship with the Angle-wings.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Sovereigns
No other small group of American butterflies has attracted so much attention as the species of the genus Basilarchia, which have been happily called the tribe of Sovereigns. These are rather large butterflies with rounded wings which are found in one species or another over practically the whole of North America.
Butterflies - The Tribe Of The Emperors
The members of this small group are distinguished from the closely related Sovereigns by the tailed hind wings in one species, by the eye-spots on the upper surface of the wings of the others, and by the fact that on the club of the antennae there are three instead of four longitudinal ridges. There is also a distinction in the arrangement of the veins of the hind wings.
Butterflies - The Meadow-browns Or Satyrs
The Meadow-browns form one of the most distinctive family groups among all the butterfly tribes. They are characterized, at least so far as our eastern species are concerned, by their slender bodies and rather large wings, toned in various shades of brown, and marked chiefly with conspicuous and characteristic eye-spots. The larger veins of the front wings are swollen at the base. The caterpillars
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