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Photo Blog: Butterflies and Milkweed

Jun 02, 2021


  • Conservation Stories
  • More than Monarchs

Butterflies and Milkweed by Mike Reese

Mike Reese is a Wisconsin Butterfly expert, winner of a lifetime achievement award from the Wisconsin Citizen-Based Monitoring Network, and coordinator of He also oversees the sightings page for the North American Butterfly Association. Mike shared photos of 16 butterfly species he observed in ONE day nectaring on milkweed. All of these photos were taken on June 30, 2012 at Buena Vista Grasslands and Sandhill Wildlife Area in Wisconsin. Buena Vista Grasslands is one of the most northern and eastern places in Wisconsin to see the Regal Fritillary (a Wisconsin endangered species) and Gray Copper. Sandhill Wildlife Area is the best place in the state to see the Two-spotted Skipper and Acadian Hairstreak. Part of the reason for the plentiful butterflies at these sites are abundant nectar resources, including milkweeds, on which they were nectaring that day.

Acadian Hairstreak on Swamp Milkweed


Gray Copper on Butterfly Weed


Coral Hairstreak on Butterfly Weed


Aphrodite Fritillary on Butterfly Weed


Silver-bordered Fritillary on Butterfly Weed


Regal Fritillary on Butterfly Weed


Common Wood-Nymph on Butterfly Weed


Sachem on Common Milkweed


Long-dash on Common Milkweed


Two-spotted Skipper on Common Milkweed


Fiery Skipper on Common Milkweed


Dun Skipper on Swamp Milkweed


Dion Skipper on Swamp Milkweed


Broad-winged Skipper on Swamp Milkweed


Mulberry Wing on Swamp Milkweed


Black Dash on Swamp Milkweed


The Monarch Joint Venture is a 501c3 nonprofit organization and a national partnership of federal and state agencies, non-governmental organizations, businesses and academic programs working together to conserve the monarch butterfly migration. The content in this article does not necessarily reflect the positions of all Monarch Joint Venture partners.