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Species Zerene cesonia - Southern Dogface

Butterfly - Zerene cesonia - female Southern Dogface - Zerene cesonia - male sulpher butterfly - Zerene cesonia - male Chrysalis - Zerene cesonia Chrysalis - Zerene cesonia Adult emerging - Zerene cesonia Southern Dogface Butterfly - Zerene cesonia Southern Dogface - Zerene cesonia - male
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Papilionoidea (Butterflies (excluding skippers))
Family Pieridae (Whites, Sulphurs, Yellows)
Subfamily Coliadinae (Sulphurs and Yellows)
Genus Zerene (Dogfaces)
Species cesonia (Southern Dogface)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
First described in 1790 by Caspar Stoll as Papilio cesonia
formerly Colias cesonia
Numbers
one of two species in this genus in North America
Size
wingspan 50-76 mm
Identification
pattern of the upper forewing resembles a yellow "dog face" bordered by black, with a black circle forming the eye
Range
resident in California, Texas, and Florida; regular migrant across southern two-thirds of United States, with occasional strays recorded as far north as central Canada and the Great Lakes
Habitat
open areas such as roadsides and pastures
Season
Three flights in the southern states from May-June, July-August, and September-April. Northern colonists have one generation per year, or do not reproduce at all.
Food
larvae feed on legumes (plants in the pea family) such as Alfalfa (Medicago sativa); prairie clover (Pentalostemon), Lead Plant (Amorpha canescens), False Indigo (Amorpha fruticosa), Soy Bean (Glycine max), Black Dalea (Dalea frutescens), Purple Prairie Clover (Dalea purpurea), and clover (Trifolium) species
Life Cycle
three generations per year in the south, to none in the north (migrants only)
Internet References
pinned adult image plus US distribution map, description, larval food plants, biology, etc. (Butterflies and Skippers of North America; nearctica.com)
pinned adult images plus larval food plants, and other info (Dale Clark, Texas, dallasbutterflies.com)
live larva image (Dale Clark, Texas, dallasbutterflies.com)
live adult images plus same information as on the nearctica site (Butterflies of North America; USGS)
pinned adult image plus distribution, description, biology, etc. (Butterflies of Canada; CBIF)