Identification: Upperside is white with light brown markings and a double row of light crescents at the margins. Forewing has one round, black spot; hindwing has two. Dry season (winter) form is larger and paler; wet season (summer form) is smaller and darker.
Wing Span: 2 - 2 3/4 inches (5.1 - 7 cm).
Life History: Males patrol and occasionally perch to find females. Eggs are laid singly near the host plant or under its leaves.
Flight: Throughout the year in South Texas and the Deep South.
Caterpillar Hosts: Water hyssop (Bacopa), Ruellia, and Lippia.
Adult Food: Shepherd's needle (Bidens pilosa) in Florida; Cordia, Casearia, and composites in Central America.
Habitat: Open, moist areas such as edges of ponds and streams, along shallow ditches, weedy fields, parks.
Range: Resident from Argentina north through Central America, Mexico, and the West Indies to South Texas and southern Florida. Migrates and temporarily colonizes to central Texas and coastal South Carolina. A rare wanderer to North Carolina, Missouri, Nebraska, and Kansas.
Conservation: Monitor status of United States populations.
NCGR: G5 - Demonstrably secure globally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management Needs: None reported.