For the last few years, we've been looking for an opportunity to display and possibly raise Atala butterflies here at MOSI Outside (Museum of Science and Industry, Tampa), and time has finally arrived! This species is found only in South Florida right now, but may have originally had a much wider range. The story of this butterfly is closely linked to that of its host plant, coontie. They serve as both a cautionary tale and an exciting success story. Pretty Butterflies, Eumaeus Atala, Atala Butterflies, Atala Hairstreak
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Help the tiny Atala Hairstreak butterfly re-establish its population in Florida by planting native coontie. Learn more on the Birds & Blooms Blog.
Great Egret in mating display (Ardea Alba), Everglades National Park, Florida
Ventral view of a Julia Heliconian Butterfly(Dryas iulia). The sole representative of its genus Dryas, it is native from Brazil to southern Texas and Florida, and in summer can sometimes be found as far north as eastern Nebraska. Over 15 subspecies have been described.