Nature: Butterflies and Moths

Dog-Face Butterfly 狗脸蝴蝶 (Family Pieridae, the Whites and Sulphurs)

Throughout the southern states, but sometimes as far north as Illinois, out wet through New Mexico and Arizona and on to California, the Dog-face butterflies are lovers of the golden sunlight. You will gasp with delight when you see the male of the Californian Dog-face, because the fore-wings of this fancy gentleman shine with a splendid purple irridescence that scintillates in the light like a pair of crown jewels. The plane yellow female looks like a drab mate indeed beside her handsome husband, because she lacks completely the strange light area of the forewing, shaped like the head of a dog. But, if you look closely, you will know right away she too belongs to the Dog-face butterflies because of the distinctive sharp point to the forewing.

Continue reading “Dog-Face Butterfly 狗脸蝴蝶 (Family Pieridae, the Whites and Sulphurs)”

Nature: Butterflies and Moths

Tiger Swallowtail 虎凤蝶 (Family Papilionidae, Swallowtails)

This glorious creature attracts the eye of everyone. The female usually has a thicker abdomen than the male, but male and female are approximately alike in coloring. It ranges over most of North America, its strong wings carrying it everywhere.

Continue reading “Tiger Swallowtail 虎凤蝶 (Family Papilionidae, Swallowtails)”

Nature: Butterflies and Moths

The Zebra 斑马纹蝶 (Heliconiidae, the Heliconians)

The Zebra Butterfly’s petticoat-like colors, and hesitant, mincing flight make you think of a princess, gayly but shyly emerging from her room for her first ball. The flight is indeed totally unlike that of any other butterfly north of the Mexican border for the wings appear to beat so slowly that you wonder how the butterfly stays afloat in the warm summer air. But try to catch it and suddenly it takes up frantic movements that waft it into some thick brush where it disappears. The magic camouflage mixture of stripes of golden sunlight and dark shadow look exactly like its wings.

Continue reading “The Zebra 斑马纹蝶 (Heliconiidae, the Heliconians)”