Home / Brush-Footed (Nymphalidae) / Meadow Fritillary (Boloria bellona)

Meadow Fritillary (Boloria bellona)

Meadow Fritillary

The Meadow Fritillary is a species of brushfoot butterflies common in parts of North America. Like other fritillary species, they are mostly seen active in the warm, summer daytime. The female of the species is an active flight partner, often seen flying together with the male.

Scientific Classification

  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Boloria
  • Scientific Name: Boloria bellona

Description and Identification


Meadow Fritillary Caterpillar

The larva is black to brownish black in color with uneven ridges throughout the body, along with very fine and tiny tufts of hairy growths on the back, laid in a series. They hibernate during winter.


Meadow Fritillary Pupa

The chrysalis is dark to yellowish to light brown with a ridge-like uneven surface, giving them the look of an elongated seashell. They remain hung from the branch of the host plant.

Adult Butterfly

Sexual Dimorphism: Present

Color and Appearance: When the wings are open, the upper tip of the forewings are seen squared off, while both the pairs of wings have reddish-orange coloration with dense black markings. When the wings are closed, the underside of the hindwings exhibits patterns in orange and purplish brown along with an off-white basal patch in each. Additionally, the males have a bright and broad yellow border on the underside of both the wings.

Meadow Fritillary Butterfly
Boloria bellona

Average wingspan: 3.5 – 5.1 cm (​1 3⁄8 – 2 inches)

Flight pattern: Low flight with a medium speed


Meadow Fritillary Eggs

Greenish-yellow in color; laid on twigs and plants

Quick Facts

Distribution Common in Mexico, found throughout Central and South America
Habitat Wet, open places like streamsides, pastures, and fields
Host plants Violet plants including northern white violet (Viola pallens) and woolly blue violet (Viola sororia)
Adult diet Flower nectar

Did You Know?

  • The butterfly gets its specific name Bellona from the ancient Roman goddess of war with the same name who is characterized by the military helmet worn on her head.
Meadow Fritillary Images
Meadow Fritillary Photos
Meadow Fritillary Pictures

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *