Types Of Butterflies (#19 Is The Most Beautiful)

These are the different types of butterflies:

Regal Fritillary Butterflies

Regal Fritillary (Speyeria idalia)
Regal Fritillary Butterfly
  • Scientific name: Speyeria idalia
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Kingdom: Animalia

The Regal Fritillary butterfly is an orange butterfly that has black borders on its wings with white dots. The interior of the wing is mostly orange with black dots and markings. Regal fritillary females are usually larger than males

Monarch Butterflies

Monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus)
  • Scientific name: Danaus plexippus
  • Species: D. plexippus
  • Genus: Danaus
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Life span: 2 to 6 weeks

Monarch Butterflies have red-orange wings that have vein-like black patterns. Their wings look like stained glass. The borders of the wings are black borders with white specks.

Pearl Crescent Butterflies

Pearl Crescent Butterfly (Phyciodes tharos)
Pearl Crescent Butterfly.
  • Scientific name: Phyciodes tharos
  • Species: P. tharos
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Phyciodes
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Kingdom: Animalia

Pearl Crescent butterflies have red and brown wings that have crescent-shaped white markings on the outer edges. These butterflies like feeding on the nectar of aster flowers. They also lay their eggs on asters, and their young caterpillars feed on the leaves of the aster.

Viceroy Butterflies

Viceroy Butterfly (Limenitis archippus)
Viceroy Butterfly.
  • Scientific name: Limenitis archippus
  • Higher classification: Admirals
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Rank: Species
  • Symbol of: Kentucky

Viceroy butterflies look like monarch butterflies as they have the same pattern with their dark orange coloring and black veins. Viceroy butterflies even have a series of white spots along their wing edges. However, a viceroy has a black line crossing the postmedian hindwing. Viceroys are also smaller than monarchs.

Acadian Hairstreak Butterflies

Acadian Hairstreak Butterflies (Satyrium acadica)
Acadian Hairstreak Butterflies.
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Lycaenidae
  • Genus: Satyrium
  • Species: S. acadica

Acadian Hairstreak butterflies have gray undersides and brown-gray uppersides. Each hindwing also has a tail with a speck of orange, blue, and white coloring.

Pine Butterflies

Pine Butterfly (Neophasia menapia)
Pine Butterfly.
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Pieridae
  • Genus: Neophasia
  • Species: N. menapia

The upper side of the Pine Butterfly’s forewing has a mostly all-white cell and a black band along the costal margin. The underside of the hindwing has black veins. Female pine butterflies look similar to males but are usually duller; and their hindwings often have red edges, tinged with yellow.

Comma Butterflies

Comma Butterfly (Polygonia c-album)
Comma Butterfly.
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Polygonia
  • Species: P. c-album

Comma butterflies have ragged wings. Their underwings are mottled brown with a white mark that resembles a comma. The upper wings are orange, brown, and white with brown-tinged wingtips.

Map Butterflies

Map Butterfly (Araschnia levana)
Map Butterfly
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Araschnia
  • Species: A. levana

Map butterflies have a variety of spots, some whitish subapical and distomarginal spots on the forewing and a row of blue bars near the distal margin of the hindwing. 

Moorland Clouded Yellow Butterflies

Moorland Clouded Yellow  Butterfly (Colias palaeno)
Moorland Clouded Yellow Butterfly
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Pieridae
  • Genus: Colias
  • Species: C. palaeno

Moorland Clouded Yellow butterflies are usually of a lemon yellow to a pale yellow color outlined with black (sometimes a pinkish-purple) borders.

Piedmont Ringlet Butterflies

Piedmont Ringlet Butterfly (Erebia meolans)
Piedmont Ringlet Butterfly
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Erebia
  • Species: E. meolans

Piedmont Ringlet butterflies have dark brown to black upper wings with red post-discal bands. It’s an alpine butterfly (found in the Alps).

Arctic Fritillary Butterflies

Arctic Fritillary Butterfly (Boloria chariclea)
Artic Fritillary Butterfly
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Boloria
  • Species: B. chariclea

Arctic Fritillary butterflies are typically dark orange with black spots, chevron markings, and bars.

Northern Blue Butterflies

Nothern Blue Butterflies (Plebejus idas)
Northern Blue Butterflies.
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Lycaenidae
  • Genus: Plebejus
  • Species: P. idas

Nothern Blue male butterflies have a shimmering blue upperside wing while the female upperside is white-gray with brown and orange spots. The hindwing has small black dots that mark the outer edges. They are also known as the Idas Blue butterfly.

Creamy Marblewing Butterflies

Creamy Marblewing Butterfly (Euchloe ausonides
)
Creamy Marblewing Butterfly
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Pieridae
  • Genus: Euchloe
  • Species: E. ausonides

Creamy Marblewing butterflies have a one-inch wingspan with an underside that is usually marble-cream and green in color.

Falcate Orangetip Butterflies

Falcate Orangetip Butterflies ()
Falcate Orangetip Butterfly.

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Pieridae
Genus: Anthocharis
Species: A. midea

Falcate Orangetip Butterflies are quite small and have a hooked wing. The males have orange markings, but the females do not.

Falcate Orangetip Butterflies.

Red Admiral Butterflies

Red Admiral Butterflies (Vanessa atalanta)
Red Admiral Butterfly.
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Vanessa
  • Species: V. atalanta

Red Admiral Butterflies are identifiable by their black forewings that are marked with red bars and white spots. The underside of their hindwings has brown and black patterns.

Green Hairstreak Butterflies

Green Hairstreak Butterfly (Callophrys rubi)
Green Hairstreak Butterfly.

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Lycaenidae
Genus: Callophrys
Species: C. rubi

Green Hairstreak Butterflies are small and very rare. These butterflies are still found in two of their original habitats in San Francisco, Golden Gate Heights and Presidio’s coastal bluffs and dunes.

Sleepy Orange Butterflies

Sleepy Orange Butterfly (Eurema nicippe)
Sleepy Orange Butterflies.

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Pieridae
Genus: Eurema
Species: E. nicippe

The Sleepy Orange Butterfly’s upper wings are bright orange with black borders. The colors vary depending on the season. In the summer, the butterflies are a deep butter color, but in colder months they range from tan to brick red.

Palos Verdes Blue

Palos Verdes Butterfly
Palos Verdes Blue

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Lycaenidae
Genus: Glaucopsyche
Species: G. lygdamus
Subspecies: G. l. palosverdesensis

Blue Morpho Butterfly

Blue Morpho Butterfly
Blue Morpho Buttterfly

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Nymphalidae
Genus: Morpho
Species: M. peleides

Western Tiger Swallowtail

Western Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio rutulus)
Western Tiger Swallotail
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Papilionidae
  • Genus: Papilio
  • Species: P. rutulus

Two-Tailed Tiger Swallowtail

Two-Tailed Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio multicaudata)
Two-Tailed Tiger Swallowtail
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Papilionidae
  • Genus: Papilio
  • Species: P. multicaudata

Black Swallowtail

Black Swallowtail (Papilio polyxenes)
Black Swallowtail
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Papilionidae
  • Genus: Papilio
  • Species: P. polyxenes
  • Lifespan: about 10 to 12 days

Queen

Queen Butterfly (danaus gilippus)
Queen Butterfly
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Danaus
  • Species: D. gilippus

Weidemeyer’s Admiral

Weidemeyer's Admiral (Limenitis weidemeyerii)
Weidemeyer’s Admiral
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Limenitis
  • Species: L. weidemeyerii

California Sister

California Sister (Adelpha bredowii)
California Sister
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Adelpha
  • Species: A. bredowii

Canyonland Satyr

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Cyllopsis
  • Species: C. pertepida

What Are The Most Common Butterflies?

Identification of Common Butterflies:

  • Wester Swallowtail (Papilio rutulus)
  • Two-tailed Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio multicaudata)
  • Black Swallowtail (Papilio polyxenes coloro)
  • Monarch (Danaus plexippus)
  • Queen (Danaus gilippus)
  • Weidemyer’s Admiral (Basilarchia weidemeyerii)
  • California Sister (Adelpha bredowii)
  • Canyonland Satyr (Cyllopsis Pertepida)

What Are Common Butterfly Names?

FamilyCommon nameCharacteristics
HedylidaeAmerican moth-butterfliesSmall, brown, like geometrid moths; antennae not clubbed; long slim abdomen
HesperiidaeSkippersSmall, darting flight; clubs on antennae hooked backward.
LycaenidaeBlues, coppers, hairstreaksSmall, brightly colored; often have false heads with eyespots and small tails resembling antennae.
NymphalidaeBrush-footed or four-footed butterfliesUsually have reduced forelegs, so appear four-legged; often brightly colored.
PapilionidaeSwallowtailsOften have ‘tails’ on wings; caterpillar generates foul taste with osmeterium organ; pupa supported by a silk girdle.
PieridaeWhites and alliesOften have ‘tails’ on wings; caterpillar generates foul taste with osmeterium organ; pupa supported by a silk girdle.
RiodinidaeMetalmarksOften have metallic spots on wings; often conspicuously colored with black, orange, and blue.
Common Butterfly Names

What Is The Rarest Butterfly?

Palos Verdes Blue (Glaucopsyche lygdamus palosverdesensis)
Palos Verdes Blue

The Palos Verdes Blue is the rarest butterfly in the world. Presumed extinct until 1994, when researchers discovered a population in San Pedro, California.

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Lycaenidae
Genus: Glaucopsyche
Species: G. lygdamus
Subspecies: G. l. palosverdesensis

What Is The Most Beautiful Butterfly?

Blue Morpho Butterfly (Morpho peleides)
Blue Morpho Butterfly

The most beautiful butterflies are the Blue Morpho Butterflies. Their wings are bright blue and have lacy black edges, the result of light reflecting off microscopic scales on the back of their wings.

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Nymphalidae
Genus: Morpho
Species: M. peleides

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