Common Buckeye, Junonia  coenia

Common Buckeye

Junonia coenia

Above, the Common Buckeye is a brownish butterfly with two orange bars near the leading edge of the forewing, a white band on the forewing, and large eyespots that make identifying this butterfly in Wisconsin very easy. Below, this species is much paler, especially on the hindwing, and sometimes the large eyespot is partially hidden. The orange and white bars are similar to the forewings above, but the eyespots on the hindwing are much reduced.

Open, dry fields, roadsides, trails, and waste areas.

Overwintering Strategy:   Small Migration

This species may be double brooded in Wisconsin, especially when the immigrants arrive in the state in early May.

Caterpillar Host Plants:
Blue toadflax (Linaria canadensis), American plantain, Black seeded plantain or Red stalked plantain (Plantago rugelii), Wild petunia ( Ruellia humilis), Blue vervain (Verbena hastata), Hoary vervain (Verbena stricta) and False foxgloves (Agalinis species or Gerardia species)

The Common Buckeye is not a common butterfly in Wisconsin, but as an immigrant from farther south, it makes it to Wisconsin on a fairly regular basis and is always a pleasure to see

Overwintering Strategy

Two-way migration: Adult migrates from Wisconsin to Central Mexico
Small migration: Adult migrates from Wisconsin to southern US
Immigrant: Adult migrates into Wisconsin from warmer areas and don't fly south in winter
Adult Butterfly: Hibernates overwinter as an adult butterfly
Eggs: Eggs laid on stems, twigs or foot plants overwinter in diapause
Caterpillar: Caterpillars make nests on the base of plants and hibernate until spring
Chrysalis: Caterpillars shed their last skin, form a chrysalis and enter diapause.

For more information, read: Where Do Butterflies Go In Winter?

Further Information:   

 Design A Butterfly Garden
 Take The Butterfly Quiz
 Monarch Life Cycle
 Butterflies and Moths of North America
 Southern Wisconsin Butterfly Assn (NABA)
 The Butterfly Site

Bees flying footer graphic