March Manhattan butterflies

After a historically warm winter, butterflies are already on the wing in New York, with recent reports of Mourning Cloak, Eastern Comma, and Cabbage White in the city. Mourning Cloaks and Eastern Commas overwinter as adults (so do Question Marks) and emerge on warm days; Cabbage White overwinters in pupal form. American Lady is also possible in March, though whether they are individuals that overwintered or migrated from the south is apparently unclear.

Remarkably, an American Snout was photographed in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, on March 2:

Keep your eyes peeled for early sightings of these species, especially as temperatures reach 50s and 60s in the city over the next few days.

And watch for any Celastrina azures -- so far, there are no iNaturalist records of this complex in March in Manhattan. If you come across one, try to get photographs showing as much detail of the wings as possible.

Here's @kasimac's photo of an Eastern Comma from Central Park on March 4, when temperatures hit 57 degrees:

Manhattan butterfly project is here, and checklist-in-progress is here:

@kasimac @kenchaya @nycnatureobserver @nycbirder @pawelp @susanhewitt @spritelink

Posted on March 08, 2020 02:53 AM by djringer djringer


@djringer Thanks for the heads up on recent March butterflies sightings. I should be able to get to Governors Island this month during the off-season and will keep the camera ready if any are seen.

Posted by nycbirder over 4 years ago


Posted by djringer over 4 years ago

I had my first Red Admiral of the year just south of the CP Reservoir on March 14th but couldn’t get a photo because a bird chased it off. I will check out the spreadsheet in the link above. Thanks!

Posted by spritelink over 4 years ago

All very interesting. Good work everyone.

Posted by susanhewitt over 4 years ago

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