Checkerspot ID?

Theona Checkeerspot Butterfly photographed by Jeff Zablow at the National Butterfly Center, Mission, TX

You’re always to share the where of it? This Checkerspot butterfly was seen in the Perennial beds of the National Butterfly Center in Mission, Texas during Christmas week. At the time, I think my friends shared that this was a Theona Checkerspot butterfly.

Now I’m carefully studying this image, wanting to be sure that these nearly fully displayed wings are the right dorsal forewing and the right dorsal hindwing. Working from there, I am struggling with images I compare it with, in Glassberg’s A Swift Guide to Butterflies of North America. 

Is this a Theona Checkerspot? I can’t be sure. I know that like humans, butterflies can vary some.

Help in ID’ing would be welcomed?

Jeff

Red Rim? Yes!

Red-rim butterfly on fallen branch photographed by Jeff Zablow at the National Butterfly Center, Mission, TX

“R” according to Jeffrey Glassberg’s A Swift Guide to Butterflies of North America (Princeton University Press, 2017). Rarely seen in the United States. December 2017, and there we were in the Lower Rio Grande Valley in Mission, Texas. We were working a trail in the National Butterfly Center, and I think it was John who spotted it on a bait log (banana and beer mashed and ‘painted’ on a log suspended inches above the ground). A Red Rim Butterfly (Biblis hyperia).

It was spectacular. The upper surface was jet. black, and that band of rich red across the hindwings jumped out at you, it did. It tolerated a few shutter clicks, and then flew to this nearby tree. I continued shooting it, even with my Macro- lens at considerable disadvantage.

I finally make it to this southern tip of Texas, now me in my majority, and I make the acquaintance of this Red Rim, and that Erato Heliconian and Tropical Greenstreaks and Mexican Fritillaries and that regal Malachite.

My internal debate, should I share this image, was brief, for most of us cannot find a Red Rim in our image bank, and this is one, a slight bit of eye strain aside.

Jeff