Julia butterfly

Julia heliconian

Dryas iulia (often incorrectly spelled julia), commonly called the Julia butterfly, Julia heliconian, the flame, or flambeau, is a species of brush-footed butterfly (known as Nymphalidae). The sole representative of its genus Dryas, it is native from Brazil to southern Texas and Florida, and in summer can sometimes be found as far north as eastern Nebraska. Over 15 subspecies have been described.

Its wingspan ranges from 82 to 92 mm, and it is colored orange (brighter in male specimens) with black markings; this species is somewhat unpalatable to birds and belongs to the “orange” Batesian mimicry complex.

The species is popular in butterfly houses because it is long-lived and active throughout the day. However, the caterpillars are spiky and may cause a skin rash.

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