V is for Viceroy Butterfly

Viceroy Butterfly

Did you think this might be a Monarch Butterfly? The Viceroy tricks us squirrels, too. These two butterflies co-mimic each other, with the orange and black banding and both taste bad!

We’re not clear if both are poisonous, but it doesn’t matter. Those are warning colors. If a bird has eaten a nasty-tasting orange and black butterfly once, it leaves the next one alone. A squirrel will, too! This works really well for the Viceroys.

There is a slight difference you human readers can use to tell them apart: the Viceroy has an extra band of black going across the lengthwise bands ( we hope that makes sense!) on the bottom of the back wings.

Viceroy Butterfly

It’s easy to see if you’re looking for it!

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