The American Snout Butterfly, Libytheana carinenta, is more common in Tippecanoe County, Indiana this year. We counted 6 American Snout Butterflies at our annual Butterfly Encounter after counting only 7 in the previous 9 years. One bold individual landed on one of our insect nets. It wanted to stand up and be counted!
I have noted a snout butterfly puddling outside Smith Hall, home of Purdue Entomology. We have a hackberry tree nearby that provides food for the caterpillars but I have not noted them previously. These butterflies can inhabit urban landscapes if given proper habitat. In Lafayette, Indiana, Hackberry is an “approved” street tree. The city will be replacing many ash trees. Hackberries could provide resources for American Snouts, Hackberry Emperors and Tawny Emperors and promote greater numbers of urban butterflies.
A snout butterfly photo has proved elusive until I photographed the individual in this post. The undersides of the snout butterfly mimic a dead leaf and blend into the background. They puddle with wings closed making them difficult to spot even when I see them land. If disturbed, they fly up and display their showy orange and black wings with white spots.