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Common Buckeye Butterfly

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Common Buckeye Butterfly

Common Buckeye Butterfly, Junonia coenia (also known as Precis coenia) is a beautiful butterfly with conspicuous eyespots on both the fore- and hind-wings. This species occurs through much of the United States.

Common Buckeye Butterfly

Common Buckeye Butterfly

adult Buckeye wingspan ranges in size from 4.2 cm to 7 cm. The males are usually slightly smaller than the females, with smaller abdomens and smaller hindwing eyespots. larval host food plants for the Buckeye include members of the snapdragon, toadflax, and plantain families. Plants are collected in the field, potted and kept in the greenhouse until they are needed for ovapositioning. Phytochemicals released by the plantain stimulate ovapositioning and act as feeding stimulants to the young caterpillars upon hatching.

Life Cycle: Males perch on the ground or low plants and watch for passing females. They pursue any likely object. Females inclined to mate will land, and the male will follow. Courtship behavior is variable. Sometimes they land, fold their wings, and mate. On other occasions females have been observed fluttering their wings after landing. The male responds by hovering over her and fluttering his wings as he lands behind her. The male will then pursue her by nudging her from behind. They will then mate, or if she chooses not to mate, she will flap her wings with a high intensity, spread her wings and lift her abdomen to deny him access, or just fly away.

Common Buckeye Butterfly

Common Buckeye Butterfly

Junonia coenia tends to like more open areas such as fields, parks, pastures, meadows, and coastal dunes. You can also find them along roadsides and in other disturbed, weedy places. They are often near their food plants, and may also feed or drink around mud puddles.

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