Baltimore Checkerspot


The Baltimore Checkerspot is one butterfly I rarely see even though it is said to range in the Great Lakes regions. We are the western most direction of their range I believe. They are found in bogs, wet meadows and marshes. This one was found in a wet meadow (where I was not about to enter and get wet). It was just resting.


What is interesting is the plants where they lay the eggs, Chelone glabra or turtlehead (wetland plant), Penstemon hirsutus or hairy beard tongue, Penstemon hirsutus or false foxglove, and Plantago lanceolata or English plantain. That is the place to look for them.


I am sure those south and east of me see them more frequently.

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19 Responses to Baltimore Checkerspot

  1. aussiebirder says:

    Beautiful picture of a beautiful butterfly Donna!

  2. I do not see them here even though there are wet woods behind us, I have the right conditions with both host and nectar plants, and the lake is across the street. I would say if I went to the Nature Center in the bog garden I might see them which is a great idea! Thanks for sharing this beauty Donna!

  3. That’s a new one for me. Thanks.

  4. Yes, I see them on a regular basis but thought they were a variation of the monarch. This posting encourages me to be more diligent in my botanical identifications.

  5. Debra says:

    It is always such a treat to see a creature for the first time. I have never seen this butterfly before. Thanks for sharing! (btw Donna, I tried to comment on an older post but there was no form available. Have you intentionally closed comments after a certain period of time? I wanted to tell you how much I appreciated the marsh birds and hoped you didn’t get eaten alive while getting the shots! haha)

    • donna213 says:

      Thanks. I too like finding butterflies new to me and uncommon in my area. I checked my settings and found WP had them set to 60 days. I unchecked it to allow comments without limitations. Thanks for letting me know. I don’t turn off comments here, but sometimes on GWGT.

  6. David says:

    Nice captures and presentation with progression from closed wing, to partially open, to fully open.

  7. That is a beauty! I don’t think I have ever seen it in the garden. Might be time to plant some Turtlehead!

  8. Exquisite detail! One can even see the tiny little ‘hairs’ on the grasses. I love that you captured this butterfly at several different stages of opening and closing its beautiful wings.

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