Though seen occasionally as far north as Canada and the northern U.S. states, it does not breed there. They prefer warmer states and can breed up to 4 times a year in warmer climates.
They have distinctive, multicolored eyespots on its open forewings and hindwings. They usually reside in open land. Males are very territorial and will fly out at anything that passes too closely.
The caterpillar is a black color with with white and orange lines and stripes. It also has black bristles sticking out on the dorsal side (back) at every pair of legs. These caterpillars love to feed on plants from the plantain, verbena, figwort, snapdragon, monkey flower and stonecrop families.