Great Spangled Fritillary

The Great Spangled Fritillary (Speyeria cybele) ranges over much of North America and is a common butterfly in the Ozarks. But I had never seen its caterpillar before today. One was making his way across my driveway and since I almost always have a camera at hand, there are photos. đŸ™‚

These caterpillars feed at night, specializing on Viola species and hide under leaves and debris during the day. After mating in early summer, the female lays her eggs singly on a host plant in late summer/early fall and after hatching, the caterpillars overwinter before beginning to feed. Its pupa is camouflaged to look like a dead leaf. The adults feed on the nectar from a variety of flowers.

1 comment to Great Spangled Fritillary

  • Michelle Wilson

    My name is Michelle Wilson and I work for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. I am currently working on interpretive panels for our Bellevue State Park Butterfly Garden. I am creating one panel to be an ID panel showcasing the butterfly, caterpillar and chrysalis of some of the common species. I have been struggling to find this caterpillar as am image that was good quality until I ran into yours. I was wondering if I could get permission from you to use this photo on our ID panel (giving you credit for the photo).

    Please let me know If you would grant permission to use this. It is a one-time use as it is on a static panel and not on hand-out type brochures or other information.

    Great photos and I love the site, will bookmark it tonight when I get home!

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