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North American Ecology (US and Canada)

Eumaeus atala was once considered extinct but a few small colonies are now known to exist as residents of North America only in the most southern part of Florida (Scott 1986). It ranges to the Bahamas, where there are larger colonies, Cuba and the Isle of Pines. Habitats are subtropical brushy areas and hammocks, mostly in pinelands. Host plants are restricted to a small number of shrubby, fernlike and poisonous Zambia species (Cycadacae). Eggs are laid on the host plant in clutches with usually a dozen, but up to 50 eggs per clutch. Larvae, pupae and adults are brightly colored probably as warning coloration of poisons sequestered from host plants. There are many flights all year(Scott 1986).


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