SPECIES Danaus plexippus
ORIGIN Australasia/ Americas
FRAME 14.5x14.5xD3cm Made from recycled products.
DESCRIPTION Commonly known as the Monarch or Wanderer butterfly. This is one of our best-known butterflies often seen soaring around our gardens.
The beautiful Danaus plexippus caterpillar with its striped / ringed cream and black colouring can be seen feeding on plants from the poisonous Australian Milkweed family. In summertime three weeks after pupating on the leaf of its food plant the adult emerges. Its pupa is a lovely shade of green banded by shiny gold dots. The adult butterfly is a bright burnt orange colour highlighted with black and white spots and black veins. These bright colours serve to ward off potential predators whilst the paler underside serves as great camouflage whilst resting against tree bark. A small dot on a vein in the dorsal wings denotes a male.
This species was first reported in the USA in the early 1800’s. In winter there are mass migrations south to warmer areas notably in a specific mountain zone of Mexico. There they mass on specific trees and stay in a state of dormancy until the temperature changes.
It can be found all over Europe, Nth America, PNG, NZ and Australia and South America.
Please note colourations may vary from image from rusty orange to dark orange .
Danaus a great-grandson of Zeus, was a mythical king in Egypt or Libya, who founded Argos; Plexippus was one of the 50 sons of Aegyptus, the twin brother of Danaus.