Orange-barred Sulphur - Phoebis philea

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Orange-barred Sulphur Butterfly ~ Phoebis philea

Although similar to Cloudless Sulphur butterflies, Orange-barred Sulphurs are larger. Females are large yellow butterflies with spots on the outside of their hind wings. Male butterflies have smaller spots on the outsides of their wings. The two photos above are of female Orange-barred Sulphur butterflies. This species is found primarily in the extreme southern edge of the United States (and throughout Mexico).

Above middle: female laying an egg on a cassia - senna plant. Orange-barred Sulphur larvae caterpillars, mid-size. The younger caterpillars are green/olive.

As the caterpillars grow larger, they become more green. They often rest with the front half of their bodies curved up and down.

Caterpillars have six eyes on each side of their heads. Below left; four of the six eyes are easily visible in this photo. Click to enlarge to see the additional two eyes. Below middle photo: the two spots that are in the spot we would expect to see eyes if this were a mammal are simply spots. The four dots on each lower side of its face are eyes. Below right: a caterpillar has attached itself and is preparing to pupate.

Center below: wings of male adults boast bright orange spots on the inside of their wings. When a bright light is behind a male, the orange is visible.

Below: a male Orange-barred Sulphur did not expand its wings to dry properly. Because its wings are deformed, the wings are open. Its orange spots are clearly visible.