Southern Pearly Eye (Enodia portlandia [Fabricius])
Wing span: 2 3/16 - 2 3/4 inches (5.6 -7 cm).
Identification: Antennal clubs are orange. Upperside is brown with dark eyespots at the margins. Underside is light brown; submarginal row of 4 spots (Florida females may have 5) on forewing is slightly curved and brown line inside this spot row is straight or zigzagged. Spots are encircled by diffuse white.
Life history: Males perch on tree trunks, sometimes head downward, to wait for females. Eggs are laid singly on or near the host plant; caterpillars feed on leaves. Older caterpillars hibernate.
Flight: Three broods from March-October.
Caterpillar hosts: Bamboo: giant cane (Arundinaria gigantea) and switch cane (A. tecta).
Adult food: Sap, rotting fruit, carrion, dung.
Habitat: Shady, damp woods near stream-fed swamps.
Range: Eastern Oklahoma and eastern Texas east through the southeastern United States.
Conservation: Its swamp forest habitats are gradually disappearing in the Southeast.
The Nature Conservancy Global Rank: G4 - Apparently secure globally, though it might be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management needs: Conserve and minimally manage all remaining habitats.
Opler, P. A. and G. O. Krizek. 1984. Butterflies east of the Great Plains. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore. 294 pages, 54 color plates. Opler, P. A. and V. Malikul. 1992. A field guide to eastern butterflies. Peterson field guide #4. Houghton-Mifflin Co., Boston. 396 pages, 48 color plates. Scott, J. A. 1986. The butterflies of North America. Stanford University Press, Stanford, Calif. 583 pages, 64 color plates.
Author: Jane M. Struttmann
State and Regional References:
Neck, R.W. 1996. A Field Guide to Butterflies of Texas. Gulf Publishing Co., Houston, Texas. Opler, Paul A. 1999. Peterson Field Guide to Western Butterflies, revised edition. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass. Stanford, R.E. and P.A. Opler. 1993. Atlas of Western USA Butterflies. Privately published, Denver, Colo. Tilden, J.W. and A.C. Smith. 1986. A Field Guide to Western Butterflies. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass. Tveten, J. and Tveten, G. 1996. Butterflies of Houston & Southeast Texas. Univ. of Texas Press, Austin, TX. 292 pp.