Isabella's Heliconian (Eueides isabella [Stoll]
Wing span: 3 1/16 - 3 1/2 inches (7.8 - 9 cm).
Identification: Forewing elongated with rounded apex. Wings similar above and below. Apical half of forewing black with yellow areas; basal half orange with a black stripe. Hindwing orange with 2 black stripes; white dots along the black outer margin.
Life history: Males patrol for receptive females, who may mate more than once. Eggs are laid singly on tendrils or on underside of host plant leaves; caterpillars then feed on those parts of the plant. Adults roost alone on underside of leaves.
Flight: April-July in Texas, throughout the year in the tropics.
Caterpillar hosts: Passion-vines (Passiflora species).
Adult food: Flower nectar.
Habitat: Subtropical woodland edges, scrub, and brushy fields.
Range: Brazil north to Mexico and the West Indies; periodic immigrant to central Texas.
Conservation: Not required for irregular resident.
The Nature Conservancy Global Rank: G5 - Demonstrably secure globally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management needs: None reported.
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