Most Northern Checkerspots have rows of orange yellow on a network of black grid-like veins. The wings are highly patterned and bright. The butterfly may be darker or paler depending on the region it is in, and females can be just as orange or almost completely black. The bodies of most butterflies are black with orange rings by the tip of the abdomen, though females may lack the rings. The variability between regions and individuals makes it difficult to quickly identify, but knowing its western range helps. It is a common butterfly in the northwestern provinces and states, and can be found on hiking trails, in meadows, and in ravines, where males wait for females.
Caterpillars are black and spiky. They feed on asters, rabbitbrush, and possibly goldenrod. This colorful butterfly is active from April through July.
General Characteristics Capability, Shape, Texture/Pattern, Benefits, Dangers
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed above as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns.
Territorial Map U.S., Canada, and Mexico
Prince Edward Is.
Butterfly and Moth Anatomy
Antennae: Butterflies and Moths have a pair of antennae on the head used for sensing.
Head: The head is home to the insect's eyes, antennae, and proboscis.
Thorax: Home to the three pairs of legs as well as vital internal organs.
Abdomen: Contains vital internal organs such as the heart(s) and reproduction facilities.
Forewing: The upper, forward wing pair used for flying.
Hindwing: The lower, rearward wing pair used for flying.
NOTE: Butterflies and Moths are part of the Lepidopteran order as they share many similarities.