White Peacock Butterfly – Anartia jatrophae

White Peacock Butterfly – Anartia jatrophae
White Peacock's camouflage goes well with sandy soil.
Family: Nymphalidae (brushfoot butterflies)
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White Peacock Butterfly

The White Peacock is very limited in range to the tropics; much more so than its more well-known cousin, the Buckeye Butterfly. Peacocks are not strong fliers, and being less hardy, they remain a rarity outside their strongholds in south Texas and Florida.


Life Cycle: Eggs are pale yellow, laid on various host plants including ruellia and water hyssop. Caterpillars are black and spiny, with silver spots. Chrysalis green, darkening with age. The White Peacock flies year-round except in very cold weather.
Habitat: Swamps, watersides, shorelines, disturbed places.
Range: South Texas and South Florida. Strays north to Kansas and Massachusetts, also much of the tropics.

White Peacock Butterfly
Images courtesy Andrew Willias

Order Lepidoptera, which contains both butterflies and moths, includes at least 125,000 known species including 12,000 in North America. Butterflies are revered for their brightly colored wings and pleasing association with fair weather and flowers.
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