Mississippi Butterflies: Pictures and Butterfly Identification Help

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picture of a Spicebush Swallowtail, the official state Butterfly of Mississippi and part of the Mississippi butterflies collection

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A small territory with mostly lowland plains explains the comparatively low butterfly diversity in the state.

Approximately one hundred and fifty species, including the Skipper butterflies have been documented.

The top picture shows a Spicebush Swallowtail, the official state butterfly, and also the most common swallowtail species.

The following list provides a representative sample of pictures of Mississippi butterflies. Anyone looking for additional pictures and identification help can press the green butterflies button.

Butterflies: Whites and Yellows

picture of a Great Southern White Butterfly part of the Mississippi butterflies collection
Pieridae is the formal name of the family that consists of the butterflies with white wings and yellow wings. Like most of the states in the South, Mississippi has a move diverse yellow butterflies population.

The Great Southern White, pictured, is probably the most common of the white species, apart from the ever present Cabbage White. The following list documents the remainder of Mississippi’s Pieridae species.

Falcate Orangetip
Cabbage White
Checkered White
Great Southern White
Clouded Sulphur
Orange Sulphur
Southern Dogface
Yellow Angled-Sulphur
Cloudless Sulphur
Large Orange Sulphur
Barred Yellow
Mexican Yellow
Little Yellow
Sleepy Orange
Dainty Sulphur

Blues, Hairtreaks and Coppers

picture of a Pygmy Blue butterfly
When the talk is about Mississippi butterflies in th Gossamer Wing category, hairstreaks dominate the conversation. Combined there are less coppers and blues than their are hairstreak species. Still, compared to other Southern states, Mississippi lacks diversity in all the Gossamer Wing species. The picture shows a Pygmy Blue butterfly.
Marine Blue
Eastern Pygmy-Blue
Eastern Tailed-Blue
Spring Azure
Summer Azure
Ceraunus Blue
Reakirt’s Blue
Great Purple Hairstreak
Juniper Hairstreak
Brown Elfin
Henry’s Elfin
Eastern Pine Elfin
Oak Hairstreak
Coral Hairstreak
Banded Hairstreak
King’s Hairstreak
Striped Hairstreak
Red-banded Hairstreak
Dusky-blue Groundstreak
Gray Hairstreak
White-M Hairstreak
Bronze Copper

Brush Footed Butterflies

picture of a Pearl Crescent butterfly
The presence of ten Wood Nymphs and Satyrs provides a bit of diversity in the Mississippi brush footed category. The remainder of the list is very similar to all the Gulf Coast states. The picture shows a Pearl Crescent butterfly. Crescents rank among the smallest of the brush footed species. Look for them flying low to the ground.
Brush footed
Little Metalmark
American Snout
Gulf Fritillary
Zebra Heliconian
Variegated Fritillary
Diana Fritillary
Great Spangled Fritillary
Red-spotted Purple
Astyanax’ Red-spotted Purple
Hackberry Emperor
Tawny Emperor
Silvery Checkerspot
Gorgone Checkerspot
Phaon Crescent
Pearl Crescent
Texan Crescent
Baltimore Checkerspot
Brush footed
Common Buckeye
White Peacock
Question Mark
Eastern Comma
Mourning Cloak
Red Admiral
Painted Lady
American Lady
Goatweed Leafwing
Southern Pearly-eye
Northern Pearly-eye
Creole Pearly-eye
Appalachian Brown
Gemmed Satyr
Georgia Satyr
Mitchell’s Satyr
Little Wood-Satyr
Carolina Satyr
Common Wood-Nymph

Mississippi Butterflies: Swallowtails

picture of a Palamedes Swallowtail Butterfly
Five of Mississippi’s swallowtail species have dark colored wings. The Palamedes Swallowtail, pictured can be most easily identified by the stripes on the abdomen.
  • Pipevine Swallowtail
  • Zebra Swallowtail
  • Black Swallowtail
  • Eastern Tiger Swallowtail
  • Spicebush Swallowtail
  • Palamedes Swallowtail
  • Giant Swallowtail

Butterflies: Metalmarks

Only one metalmark, the Little Metalmark flies in Mississippi.

Butterfly identification usually begins with color. So, the butterfly section is split into nine different categories based on wing color and/or the butterfly family to help all visitors and members easily categorize and document their butterfly pictures.