Butterflies of Houston and Southeast Texas (Corrie Herring Hooks Series)
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
All across the country, butterflies are becoming as popular as birds and wildflowers, especially among people seeking to enjoy the rich natural resources that Texas possesses. John and Gloria Tveten have been studying butterflies in Southeast Texas for thirty-five years, and here they offer their considerable knowledge to everyone who shares their passion for butterflies.
In this easy-to-use field guide, the Tvetens describe and illustrate more than 100 species of butterflies that live in Southeast Texas and can often be found across the state. Striking color photographs of living butterflies and caterpillars (a unique addition) show the key marks and characteristics necessary for field identification. The Tvetens' enjoyable and authoritative text describes each species' life history, habits, flight patterns, and characteristic markings.
An account of the different butterfly families, from swallowtails to longwings to skippers, precedes the descriptions of the species within each family. The Tvetens also include an interesting discussion of butterfly biology, a complete checklist of area butterflies, an index of butterfly-attracting plants, and pointers to other butterfly resources.
This field guide is the first to focus exclusively on Southeast Texas butterflies. It will be the essential reference for everyone seeking a reliable way to identify these butterflies, from field observers to apartment dwellers who wonder what is fluttering around the pot plants on the balcony.
combine to form the scientific order Lepidoptera, a word coined from the Greek lepis, “scale,” and ptera, “wing.” Their thin parchment wings are covered with tiny overlapping scales both above and below, making possible different colors and patterns on opposite sides of each wing. Butterflies, in turn, comprise two superfamilies: Papilionoidea, the “true butterflies,” and Hesperioidea, the skippers. The latter tend to be robust, heavy-bodied insects with distinct hooks at the tips of their
southern California, wandering northward in summer to colonize the midsection of the country. Some vagrants reach even the northern states and Canada. It is doubtful, however, that any of these migrants survive the winter. 1. Ventral Reakirt’s blue may appear in Houston from March or April until November, but we have found it most abundant after early June. An inhabitant of weedy fields and roadsides, it flies close to the ground and sips nectar from a variety of flowers. It also visits mud
consensus. That name honors the Reverend John Bachman, an ardent naturalist and close friend of Audubon, who married one of Bachman’s daughters. 1. Ventral 2. Larvae Snout butterflies are swift and erratic in their flight. Wary and difficult to approach, they swirl up into the trees when disturbed. However, they nectar at a variety of flowers and also sip moisture from mud puddles and stream banks. They inhabit riparian woodlands, brushy fields, the thorn-scrub of southern Texas, and even
lycaenids lived only three or four days; with 10-percent honey solution, they survived for fifteen to twenty days. The lives of butterflies revolve around warm sunlight, nectar, and actively growing plants on which the females can lay their eggs. The timing of the various broods has evolved to take advantage of all three conditions. Because butterflies are cold-blooded, they must warm their bodies and powerful flight muscles to a certain level before they can fly. This is accomplished by
individual flowers along a carefully selected route. Females lay their pale greenish eggs singly on leaves of the host, and each newly hatched larva begins almost immediately to fold a small segment of leaf as a shelter. The larger caterpillar rolls an entire leaf into a cylinder, tying it securely with silk. It starts by stretching a strand from side to side, swinging its head back and forth and reaching as far as it can without losing its secure foothold on the upper surface of the leaf. As it