Monarch or Viceroy?

Since monarch butterflies and viceroy butterflies are both rare in the yard, I haven’t had much practice identifying them. So when a gusty headwind forced this butterfly to perch on the deck this morning, I labelled the photos “Monarch” without paying much attention to the details. After a bit of research, I changed the label to viceroy. The broad stripe that crosses the hindwing’s network of other stripes seems to be the key.

What do you think? Monarch or viceroy?

4 thoughts on “Monarch or Viceroy?

  1. Gillian September 24, 2012 / 10:20 AM

    It’s definitely a Viceroy, and you’re right, that black band across the hindwings is the key. Viceroys also tend to be smaller than monarchs, though I hesitate to identify either species in flight unless I can see that cross-stripe!

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