I was walking up to get the mail when I spotted this Gulf Fritillary (Agraulis vanillae) that had just emerged and is still clinging to its chrysalis. This species is one of our commonest butterflies, but it is the first time I have seen one so recently out of the chrysalis. It has just finished pumping up its wings and will soon be on its way.
I have posted information about this species several times in the past, so I will not repeat it all here. Just remember the larva’s principle foods plants are passionflowers (plant family Passiflorae), and the butterflies in this group are sometimes grouped under the name “passionflower butterflies”.
I stuck in a couple of other photographs of Gulf Fritillaries that I took on a cultivated Lantana plant (Lantana camera) in my neighbors Jack and Peggy’s yard. These will show how different the upper wing pattern is in this species. The last picture show the proboscis inserted in a flower in search of nectar. Wouldn’t it be strange to have only a soda straw for a mouth!