Types of Butterflies in Iowa

Iowa, a midwestern U.S. state, is home to 118 species of butterflies, with 50 of those being relatively common. In the summer, the breeding of butterflies is highest as prairie flowers bloom, and plenty of nectar sources can feed them. The largest butterfly found in Iowa is the Giant Swallowtail that can have a wingspan of six inches.

Iowa does not have an officially designated state butterfly.

Brush-Footed (Nymphalidae)

Gossamer-Winged (Lycaenidae)

  • Harvester (Feniseca tarquinius)
  • American Copper (Lycaena phlaeas)
  • Gray Copper (Lycaena dione)
  • Bronze Copper (Lycaena hyllus)
  • Purplish Copper (Lycaena helloides)
  • Great Purple Hairstreak (Atlides halesus)
  • Juniper Hairstreak (Callophrys gryneus)
  • Henry’s Elfin (Callophrys henrici)
  • Coral Hairstreak (Satyrium titus)
  • Acadian Hairstreak (Satyrium acadica)
  • Hickory Hairstreak (Satyrium caryaevorus)
  • Edwards’ Hairstreak (Satyrium edwardsii)
  • Banded Hairstreak (Satyrium calanus)
  • Striped Hairstreak (Satyrium liparops)
  • Red-banded Hairstreak (Calycopis cecrops)
  • Gray Hairstreak (Strymon melinus)
  • White-M Hairstreak (Parrhasius m-album)
  • Marine Blue (Leptotes marina)
  • Eastern Tailed-Blue (Cupido comyntas)
  • Summer Azure (Celastrina neglecta)
  • Silvery Blue (Glaucopsyche lygdamus)
  • Reakirt’s Blue (Echinargus isola)
  • Melissa Blue (Lycaeides melissa)
  • Greenish Blue (Icaricia saepiolus)

Whites and Sulphurs (Pieridae)

Metalmark (Riodinidae)

Swallowtail (Papilionidae)

Skipper (Hesperiidae)

  • Columbine Duskywing (Erynnis lucilius)
  • Wild Indigo Duskywing (Erynnis baptisiae)
  • Dreamy Duskywing (Erynnis icelus)
  • Sleepy Duskywing (Erynnis brizo)
  • Horace’s Duskywing (Erynnis horatius)
  • Juvenal’s Duskywing (Erynnis juvenalis)
  • Persius Duskywing (Erynnis persius)
  • Mottled Duskywing (Erynnis martialis)
  • Northern Cloudywing (Thorybes pylades)
  • Southern Cloudywing (Thorybes bathyllus)
  • Common Checkered-Skipper (Pyrgus communis)
  • Silver-spotted Skipper (Epargyreus clarus)
  • Hayhurst’s Scallopwing (Staphylus hayhurstii)
  • Hoary Edge (Achalarus lyciades)
  • Common Sootywing (Pholisora catullus)
  • Common Streaky-Skipper (Celotes nessus)