Danaus plexippus (Linnaeus, 1758)

Family: Nymphalidae

Status: breeding migrant

NENHP Ranking: S2, Tier 1

Range: This butterfly overwinters in coastal California and in Mexico (in mountainous areas south of Mexico City). From these overwintering sites females and subsequent generations migrate north as far north as central Canada. The Monarch is found statewide in Nebraska.

Broods/Flight Times: May to mid September. Individuals found later than mid September likely do not survive the southern fall migration

Larval Hostplant(s): Milkweeds (Aesclepius sp)

Habitat: favors areas with nectar and/or host plants but as a migrant might be found anywhere

Found at:

Overwintering: As adults in Mexico

Similar Species: Viceroy

Notes: Larvae and adults are distasteful due to cardiac glycosides they ingest from milkweeds they consume as larvae.

Monarch, Kearney, Photo by Jonathan Nikkila
Monarch – male, dorsal
Monarch larva on Milkweed

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