West Coast Lady

Vanessa annabella

Order: 

Lepidoptera

Family: 

Nymphalidae

The Vanessa annabella has physical attributes such as forewings that are orange-brown with an orange bar at the leading edges.  Meanwhile, the hindwings have three to four blue sub-marginal spots while the overall wing span is 3.8-5.7 cm.  While the habitat of the west coast lady includes weedy areas, gardens, roadsides, chaparral, and fields, the geographic distribution of the species ranges from the southern British Columbia south to Baja California Norte.  Some fascinating facts about the Vanessa Annabella include that the butterfly is not endangered and that the species can potentially cause minor damage to hollyhock leaves.  Another interesting fact includes that aberrations are relatively common within the west coast lady and can be caused by cold-shocking young pupae.

 

(1) “West Coast Lady Vanessa Annabella (Field, 1971).” Butterflies and Moths of North America, Metalmark Web and Data, https://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/species/Vanessa-annabella.

(2) “Vanessa Annabella.” Art Shapiro’s Butterfly Site, University of California, Davis, http://butterfly.ucdavis.edu/butterfly/Vanessa/annabella

Photograph: T. W. Davies © California Academy of Sciences