Attributes of Polygonia interrogationis

Question Mark
Polygonia interrogationis (Fabricius, 1798)

Family: Nymphalidae
Subfamily: Nymphalinae
Identification: Forewing hooked; upperside is red-orange with black spots. Upperside hindwing of summer form is mostly black with a short tail; that of winter form has much orange and a longer, violet-tipped tail. Underside is light brown; hindwing with pearly white question mark in center.
Wing Span: 2 1/4 - 3 inches (5.7 - 7.6 cm).
Life History: Males find females by perching on leaves or tree trunks in the afternoon, flying to chase other insects and even birds. Females lay eggs singly or stacked under leaves of plants that are usually not the hosts. Caterpillars must find a host plant; they then eat leaves and live alone. Adults of the winter form hibernate; some staying in the north, many migrating to the south.
Flight: Overwintered adults fly and lay eggs in the spring until the end of May. The summer form emerges and flies from May-September, laying eggs that develop into the winter form; these adults appear in late August and spend the winter in various shelters.
Caterpillar Hosts: American elm (Ulmus americanus), red elm (Ulmus rubra), hackberry (Celtis), Japanese hop (Humulus japonicus), nettles (Urtica), and false nettle (Boehmeria cylindrica).
Adult Food: Rotting fruit, tree sap, dung, carrion. Only when these are unavailable do Question Marks visit flowers such as common milkweed, aster, and sweet pepperbush.
Habitat: Wooded areas with some open space, city parks, suburbs, fencerows.
Range: Southern Canada and all of the eastern United States except peninsular Florida, west to the eastern edge of the Rocky Mountains, south to southern Arizona and Mexico.
Conservation: Not usually required.
NCGR: G5 - Demonstrably secure globally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management Needs: None reported.
Taxonomy Notes:

Images of Polygonia interrogationis

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The map below displays all BAMONA data for this species and has three different data layers:
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*The orange dots on the map provide access to information about the 400 most recently verified sightings of this species. Sometimes, there are several records at the same location. Use the table view to access these records.

By default, the fifty most recently verified sightings are below. Sort by Observation Date to see the most recent sightings, or filter the sightings by region to get a regional list.

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Observation Date Submitter Region Verified Datesort icon
July 02, 2015 sh11 Ontario, Canada April 28, 2016 Details
March 30, 2016 SpadGuy Shenandoah County, Virginia, United States April 27, 2016 Details
April 26, 2016 Ken Bosso East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana, United States April 26, 2016 Details
April 22, 2016 Jonathan Clark Grant Parish, Louisiana, United States April 25, 2016 Details
April 16, 2016 stephen stedman Lincoln County, Tennessee, United States April 16, 2016 Details
April 03, 2016 CA Ivy Crawford County, Arkansas, United States April 03, 2016 Details
March 31, 2016 Dochartaigh Socorro County, New Mexico, United States April 01, 2016 Details
March 18, 2016 JeanEvoy De Soto County, Florida, United States March 31, 2016 Details
March 16, 2016 John LeBlanc Chesterfield County, Virginia, United States March 30, 2016 Details
March 16, 2016 Rsummerour Fairfax County, Virginia, United States March 30, 2016 Details
March 26, 2016 CA Ivy (Jon C. Ivy) Cherokee County, Oklahoma, United States March 27, 2016 Details
March 13, 2016 CA Ivy (Jon C. Ivy) Sebastian County, Arkansas, United States March 13, 2016 Details
March 06, 2016 StaceyWhetstone Knox County, Tennessee, United States March 07, 2016 Details
March 05, 2016 CA Ivy Cherokee County, Oklahoma, United States March 07, 2016 Details
March 04, 2016 cosmic_cat Claiborne Parish, Louisiana, United States March 06, 2016 Details
September 07, 2015 coenbrenda Montrose County, Colorado, United States March 04, 2016 Details
March 04, 2016 CA Ivy Sebastian County, Arkansas, United States March 04, 2016 Details
March 04, 2016 CA Ivy Sebastian County, Arkansas, United States March 04, 2016 Details
February 19, 2016 stephen stedman White County, Tennessee, United States March 01, 2016 Details
June 28, 2015 billwx Garfield County, Oklahoma, United States February 28, 2016 Details
July 08, 2015 billwx Garfield County, Oklahoma, United States February 28, 2016 Details
July 08, 2015 billwx Garfield County, Oklahoma, United States February 28, 2016 Details
May 07, 2015 billwx Garfield County, Oklahoma, United States February 27, 2016 Details
February 27, 2016 hiker96 Leavenworth County, Kansas, United States February 27, 2016 Details
May 14, 2015 billwx Garfield County, Oklahoma, United States February 27, 2016 Details
June 02, 2015 SkrentnyJeff Cook County, Illinois, United States February 20, 2016 Details
June 16, 2015 SkrentnyJeff Cook County, Illinois, United States February 20, 2016 Details
August 22, 2015 SkrentnyJeff Putnam County, Illinois, United States February 20, 2016 Details
July 15, 2012 MMarinacci Ogemaw County, Michigan, United States February 18, 2016 Details
June 08, 2014 Debbie Taylor Pope County, Arkansas, United States February 02, 2016 Details
June 24, 2010 Ilse Gebhard Kalamazoo County, Michigan, United States January 19, 2016 Details
July 12, 2015 CA Ivy (Jon C. Ivy) Adair County, Oklahoma, United States December 10, 2015 Details
June 17, 2015 Corey1487 Quebec, Canada December 09, 2015 Details
July 26, 2014 Jennifer Jilks Ontario, Canada December 05, 2015 Details
July 07, 2015 Charles Chernov Lake County, Illinois, United States November 28, 2015 Details
August 09, 2015 K Stilwell Tazewell County, Virginia, United States November 25, 2015 Details
June 16, 2015 butterflies are awesome Grayson County, Kentucky, United States November 13, 2015 Details
November 10, 2015 ButterBelle Putnam County, Tennessee, United States November 11, 2015 Details
July 05, 2015 curtis.lehman Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, United States November 06, 2015 Details
November 04, 2015 ButterBelle Putnam County, Tennessee, United States November 04, 2015 Details
June 16, 2015 SkrentnyJeff Cook County, Illinois, United States November 01, 2015 Details
June 10, 2015 jra1111 Cook County, Illinois, United States October 29, 2015 Details
October 21, 2015 ralphminer McHenry County, Illinois, United States October 21, 2015 Details
October 20, 2015 ButterBelle Putnam County, Tennessee, United States October 20, 2015 Details
October 14, 2015 stephen stedman Crockett County, Tennessee, United States October 14, 2015 Details
October 13, 2015 stephen stedman Franklin County, Tennessee, United States October 13, 2015 Details
October 09, 2015 Doug Bruce Tipton County, Tennessee, United States October 12, 2015 Details
October 09, 2015 Doug Bruce Crockett County, Tennessee, United States October 12, 2015 Details
October 05, 2015 Mapper Johnson County, Illinois, United States October 07, 2015 Details
October 06, 2015 Doug Bruce Tipton County, Tennessee, United States October 07, 2015 Details