Pennsylvania Butterflies: Pictures and Butterfly Identification Help

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picture of a Common Wood Nymph, part of the Pennsylvania butterflies collection

Gratography members can easily contribute to our Pennsylvania butterflies section. Register today.

Penn’s Woods host an average number of butterflies. Most are very common species along the Atlantic coast area. The Common Wood Nymph pictured at the top of the page is one example.

According to the Pennsylvania State University

One hundred forty-six species of butterflies and skippers have been reported in Pennsylvania. Of these, 24 have been documented only a few times and should be considered rare visitors.

Visitors looking for butterfly identification help can press the green butterfly button for more information.

Butterflies: Whites and Yellows

picture of an Orange Sulphur butterfly
Pieridae is the formal name of the family that consists of the butterflies with white wings and yellow wings. Most states have more of the yellow butterfly species. Here’s a list of the rest of the white butterflies and yellow butterflies documented in the state.
Falcate Orangetip
Olympia Marble
West Virginia White
Cabbage White
Checkered White
Clouded Sulphur
Orange Sulphur
Pink-edged Sulphur
Southern Dogface
Cloudless Sulphur
Orange-barred Sulphur
Little Yellow
Sleepy Orange
Dainty Sulphur

Blues, Hairtreaks and Coppers

picture of a Bronze Copper buterfly
Situated a bit further north, Pennsylvania might be the dividing line for states hosting more than one Copper butterfly. Most copper butterflies are found in the West. However, the presence of four in Pennsylvania is strong for the area. The picture shows a Bronze Copper.
Marine Blue
Eastern Tailed-Blue
Spring Azure
Northern Azure
Summer Azure
Dusky Azure
Appalachian Azure
Cherry Gall Azure
Silvery Blue
Melissa Blue
Great Purple Hairstreak
Juniper Hairstreak
Olive’ Juniper Hairstreak
Brown Elfin
Hoary Elfin
Frosted Elfin
Henry’s Elfin
Eastern Pine Elfin
Oak Hairstreak
Northern’ Southern Hairstreak
Coral Hairstreak
Acadian Hairstreak
Hickory Hairstreak
Edwards’ Hairstreak
Banded Hairstreak
Striped Hairstreak
Red-banded Hairstreak
Gray Hairstreak
White-M Hairstreak
Early Hairstreak
American Copper
Bronze Copper
Bog Copper

Brush Footed Butterflies

picture of a side view of a Variegated Fritillary Butterfly
A quick look at the Brush footed butterfly list shows that a few genera such as Fritillaries, Commas and Checkerspots make up a large portion of the Pennsylvania butterflies population. The picture shows a Variegated Fritillary.
Brush footed
American Snout
Gulf Fritillary
Variegated Fritillary
Great Spangled Fritillary
Aphrodite Fritillary
Regal Fritillary
Atlantis Fritillary
Silver-bordered Fritillary
Meadow Fritillary
Red-spotted Purple
White Admiral
Astyanax’ Red-spotted Purple
Hackberry Emperor
Tawny Emperor
Silvery Checkerspot
Gorgone Checkerspot
Harris’ Checkerspot
Pearl Crescent
Northern Crescent
Tawny Crescent
Brush footed
Baltimore Checkerspot
Common Buckeye
Question Mark
Eastern Comma
Green Comma
Gray Comma
Milbert’s Tortoiseshell
Compton Tortoiseshell
Mourning Cloak
California Tortoiseshell
Red Admiral
Painted Lady
American Lady
Northern Pearly-eye
Eyed Brown
Appalachian Brown
Common Ringlet
Little Wood-Satyr
Carolina Satyr
Common Wood-Nymph

Pennsylvania Butterflies: Swallowtails

picture of a Canadian Swallowtail butterfly
  • Pipevine Swallowtail
  • Zebra Swallowtail
  • Black Swallowtail
  • Canadian Tiger Swallowtail
  • Appalachian Tiger Swallowtail
  • Eastern Tiger Swallowtail
  • Spicebush Swallowtail
  • Palamedes Swallowtail
  • Giant Swallowtail

Butterfly identification usually begins with color. So, the Pennsylvania Butterflies 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.