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Question Mark 
Latin Name: Polygonia interrogationis
 
Genus: Polygonia    Species: interrogationis 
Family
Latin Name: Nymphalidae
Common Name: Brush-Foots
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Family Members
 
SubFamily
Latin Name: Nymphalinae
Common Name: True Brush-Foots
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SubFamily Members

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Comments:
The Question Mark's dark markings, irregular wing edges and cryptically colored undersides help the butterfly resemble a dead leaf when resting. Adults have a strong, rapid flight but frequently alight on overhanging branches, tree trunks or leaf litter. Wary and nervous, they are often difficult to closely approach. Males readily establish territories and aggressively investigate any passing objects. Both sexes visit rotting fruit, dung, carrion and tree sap.
   
Life Cycle:
Broods:
multiple generations
Egg:
green, laid singly or in small groups on top of each other on host leaves
Larva:
gray to black with orange and cream stripes and spots and several rows of branched spines
Host Plants:
Sugarberry, American Elm, Winged Elm
   
Host Plants:
Host Plants:
Sugarberry, American Elm, Winged Elm
   
Habitat:
Habitat:
deciduous forests, moist woodlands, forest edges and adjacent open areas
   
     
     
   
Wingspan:
Inches:
2.25 - 3
Centimeters:
5.7 - 7.6
   
Appearance:
Sexes:
similar
Compare:
Goatweed Butterfly has pointed forewing apex and lacks white question mark on hindwing.
   
     
     
Markings:
 

Above:

  • seasonally variable; dark brown with orange coloration and dark spots on forewing; narrow lavender borders and irregular, jagged edges; winter-form has increased orange on hindwing and longer tails  
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Below:

  • seasonally variable; pinkish brown dead leaf appearance; hindwing has two, small median silvery spots that form a question mark  
 
Florida Distribution:
Abundance:
occasional
   

 

     

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Map Legend: Resident (green) | Stray (Red)


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