Common name: Taylor's Checkerspot Butterfly
Scientific name: Euphydryas editha taylori
Taylor's Checkerspot Butterflies are only found on Denman Island and in Comox, British Columbia, and also in small populations in Oregon and Washington.
They have been documented feeding on Marsh Speedwell, Thyme-leafed Speedwell, Ribwort, and to a lesser degree on Common Plantago.
Median Life Expectancy:
Their wings are primarily orange with bands of white cells. The dorsal portion of the wings has a proportionate mix of black, orange and white. It is one of the smallest of the Edith Checkerspots. They were once common in Gary Oak ecosystems, wet meadows, and disturbed habitats from the Comox Valley and Honrby Island BC to the Willamette Valley in Oregon.
The Greater Vancouver Zoo along with partner organizations is part of a headstarting program for Taylor's Checkerspot Butterfly recovery efforts. Headstarting means that larvae and eggs are gathered in the wild (or bred in a captive breeding population) and the animals are given a "head start" in life by being nurtured to a more mature stage in a safe, predator-free environment before being re-released into the wild. This greatly increases the number of butterflies surviving into adulthood. 2020 saw the release of butterflies into one of their previous native habitats: Hornby Island, BC.
Endangered | Previously thought to be extinct, scientists have found some small populations in SW B.C., Washington, and Oregon.
Did you know that butterflies can often detect if it is going to rain and will keep cover under leaves for hours!?