Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Banded Orange Heliconian
Dryadula phaetusa (Linnaeus, 1758)

Family: Nymphalidae
Subfamily: Heliconiinae
Identification: Male upperside bright orange with heavy black stripes; female duller with blurred black stripes.
Wing Span: 3 3/8 - 3 1/2 inches (8.6 - 8.9 cm).
Life History: Eggs are laid singly on stems and leaves of host plants. Caterpillars chew slots into the leaves. Adults roost in small groups on grass.
Flight: July and December in Texas, all year in the tropics.
Caterpillar Hosts: Various species of passion-vine (Passiflora and Tetrastylis).
Adult Food: Flower nectar and bird droppings.
Habitat: Lowland tropical fields and open areas.
Range: Brazil north through Central America to central Mexico. Rare vagrant to Kansas and Texas.
Conservation: Not necessary for rare stray.
NCGR: G5 - Demonstrably secure globally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management Needs: None reported.
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