Heliconius charithonia, the zebra longwing has a boldly striped black and white wing pattern that warns off predators. The species is distributed across South and Central America and as far north as southern Texas and peninsular Florida; there are migrations north into other American states in the warmer months.
Zebra longwing adults roost communally at night in groups of up to 60 adults for safety from predators. The adult butterflies are unusual in feeding on pollen as well as on nectar. The pollen makes them toxic to predators. Caterpillars feed on various species of passionflower, evading the plants' defensive trichomes by biting them off or laying silk mats over them. This butterfly was found in Miami-Dade County, Florida, USA
July 8th, 2021
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