Danaus plexippus - Monarch Butterfly

Image of Aglais io Butterfly

Formal Name: Danaus plexippus

Informal Name: Monarch Butterfly

Conservation Status: No threat to conservation and numbers have been on the rise

Location: Europe and Asia

Average Wingspan (cm): 9.6

Seen Between: May - July

Description: Danaus plexippus is informally known as the Monarch Butterfly. It has an average wingspan of 9.6 cm.

The dorsal side wing is deep orange with black veins. The edge of the wings is black, detailed with white spots. The ventral side of the wing is a lighter shade of orange and brown.

Danaus plexippus is spotted between September and November. Their natural habitat is generally in an area where Milkweed is growing. They lay their eggs on the host plant for the larva to feed on and grow. The Monarch butterflies feed on the Nectar of plants such as Milkweed, Thistles, Red Clover, Horseweed and Wild Carrot. They also gather minerals from muddy puddles and damp soil grounds. The Monarch Butterfly has several predators that include Robins, Sparrows, Scrub Jays and Cardinals. To protect themselves, they show off the bright colours on their wings as a warning to suggest to predators that they are poisonous. Their conservation status is classed as least concern/ low, with no apparent threat.