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Agraulis vanillae Gulf Fritillary Butterfly larva

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Agraulis vanillae Gulf Fritillary Butterfly on Passiflora sp

Agraulis vanillae Gulf Fritillary Butterfly on Passiflora sp

 

While the Gulf Fritillary, as the name implies, is native to the area surrounding the Gulf of Mexico, but its range actually extends far beyond that. It is found as far south as Argentina and as far north as San Fransisco, according to Wikipedia.

Here it is on one of the Passiflora┬ávines, one which is not native to the part of Central Texas where I live. It seems that one cannot find locally native plants unless one digs them up, which can’t be both ethical and legal, or manages to find some that have gone to seed and from which a small taking of seed would not endanger reproduction in the natural state.

 

Gulf Fritillary on Gregg Mistflower

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Gulf Fritillary on Gregg Mistflower

Gulf Fritillary on Gregg Mistflower


Taken under low light conditions (I gotta figure out how to use the flash, I guess) here’s another one of the butterflies that have been hanging around the Gregg Mistflowers. (The other species is the Monarch.) The Agraulis vanillae Gulf Fritillary spends much of its life on the Passiflora spp. vine, especially as a caterpillar. As a result, the passionflower vines have been having a bit of trouble getting established this year.

Gulf Fritillary – Agraulis vanillae

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Gulf Fritillary Agraulis vanillae

Gulf Fritillary Agraulis vanillae - click for larger image

This butterfly is probably a little far north than it should be in January. Perched here on Gregg Dalea, either to allow its wings to dry, or to feed on the few blossoms it found. It stayed still the whole time I was taking pictures of it and the Dalea greggii, so my guess is the former. The passion flower vines that it usually feeds on are dead and I recently cut them back so as to keep the HOA happy with appearances…

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