Painted Lady

butterfly close up of a spotted butterfly with black, brown, orange and white markings with green leaves behind it

If you’ve been seeing a lot of Monarch-like butterflies lately, they are most likely Painted Ladies. They’ve been swarming flowering plants all across Iowa. These butterflies are smaller than Monarchs with more tan markings. The weather this year has been good for butterflies in general, but the reason we’re seeing Painted Ladies right now is that they are migrating south for the winter. Also be on the lookout for Red Admirals, another Monarch-like butterfly that is also migrating about now.

— Nathan Brockman, Christina Reiman Butterfly Wing Curator