American Copper May 30, 2007
Audubon's Field Guide to the Butterflies says this little butterfly is "often considered pugnacious." That may seem like a strange attribute for a butterfly, until you've watched them for some period of time.
This little American Copper's very heritage is questioned because of its preference for non-native larval food plants. Hey, I like to eat Chinese food but that doesn't mean I'm not American! Give them a break. First off, this dime sized diva is the smallest of all the Coppers, and then folks talk trash about their family. No wonder they are pugnacious.
Actually, butterflies can often be very territorial. When your adult life span is only two weeks long, you need to be very serious about finding a mate and host plants for your egg laying. Talk about a biological clock ticking! As beautiful as they are, butterflies are still insects, and insects have a rough way to go- being at the bottom of the food chain. So cut them a little slack and plant some host plants in your garden. Mmmm, Sheep Sorrel and Curly Dock.