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Species Danaus eresimus - Soldier - Hodges#4616

Soldier - Danaus eresimus Soldier - Danaus eresimus Soldier - Danaus eresimus Soldier - Danaus eresimus Soldier or Queen? - Danaus eresimus - female Danaus eresimus - male Danaus eresimus (Cramer) - Danaus eresimus - male - female Soldier - Danaus eresimus - male
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Papilionoidea (Butterflies and Skippers)
Family Nymphalidae (Brush-footed Butterflies)
Subfamily Danainae (Milkweed Butterflies & Glasswings)
Tribe Danaini (Milkweed Butterflies)
Genus Danaus
Species eresimus (Soldier - Hodges#4616)
Hodges Number
Other Common Names
Tropical Queen (1)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Danaus eresimus (Cramer)
Pap[ilio]. Dan[aus] Festiv[us]. Eresimus Cramer, [1777] (2) usually cited as: Papilio eresimus Cramer 1777
Explanation of Names
eresis - Greek for 'take' (3)
Three Danaus species north of Mexico. (2)
wingspan ~8 cm
Dorsal, very similar to the Queen, with slightly darker veins. Male has a black dot on each HW.
Ventral, black veins on both FW and HW, Queen only has black veins on HW. Soldiers are the only one in the genus that has pale squarish spots forming a concentric postmedian band.
mostly so. TX, so. FL / W. Indies / Mexico to Brazil - Map (MPG) (4)(5)
a few strays are reported north of their southern range each fall.
Found in many different open areas with their host plant, nectar sources, or pyrrolizidine alkaloids.
North to Orland in the summer, all year in south Florida with 3+ broods, most common October-December.
Milkweeds A. curassavica, A. tomentosa, twinevines - Funastrum (=Sarcostemma) clausumi, Funastrum (=Sarcostemma) cynanchoides, Cynanchum racemosum and latexplant - Morrenia odorata (Asclepiadaceae)
"I've never had Soldiers oviposit on Tropical Milkweed, although larvae readily eat it. They typically oviposit on Cynanchum or Sarcostemma. (Dale Clark, pers. comm. to MAQ, 2013)
Tropical species that began colonizing Florida in the 1970's. The Florida Soldiers come from an Antillean population, and the Texas Soldiers originated in Mexico.
In the summer, Soldiers sometimes stray north to NC.
See Also
Relatives: Queen, Monarch. See also the unrelated Viceroy
Print References
(6) (7) (8) (9)
Calhoun, J.V. 1996. Conquering soldiers: the successful invasion of Florida by Danaus eresimus (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae). Holarctic Lepidoptera 3: 7-18.
Cramer, [1777]. Uitlandsche Kapellen (Papillons exotiques) Uitl. Kapellen 2 (9-16): 1-152.
Internet References
MPG (4)
Soldier larvae - Dale Clark, Dallas County Lepidopterists' Society (DCLS)
Works Cited
1.National Audubon Society Field Guide to Butterflies
Robert Michael Pyle. 1981. Knopf.
2.A Catalogue of the Butterflies of the United States and Canada--by Jonathan P. Pelham
3.Dictionary of Word Roots and Combining Forms
Donald J. Borror. 1960. Mayfield Publishing Company.
4.North American Moth Photographers Group
5.Arthropods of Florida and Neighboring Land Areas: Lepidoptera of Florida
J.B. Heppner. 2003. Florida Department of Agriculture 17(1): 1-670.
6.Caterpillars in the Field and Garden: A Field Guide to the Butterfly Caterpillars of North America
Thomas J. Allen, James P. Brock, Jeffrey Glassberg. 2005. Oxford University Press.
7.Butterflies of the East Coast : An Observer's Guide
Rick Cech, Guy Tudor. 2005. Princeton University Press.
8.Butterflies of North America (Kaufman Focus Guides)
Jim P. Brock, Kenn Kaufman. 2003. Houghton Mifflin Co.
9.Butterflies through Binoculars: Florida
Jeffrey Glassberg, Marc C. Minno, John V. Calhoun. 2000. Oxford Press.