Sara's Orangetip Butterfly

The Sara's Orangetip butterfly, also know as the Pacific Orangetip is a striking butterfly.

Field identification is very easy. It's a variation on the white butterfly theme, with bright orange spots on the tips of the wings. Female color is more pale than the male color.

The underside of the wings are marbled, making it easy for them to hide when they close their wings and sit on an oak tree branch.

They are abundant up and down the West Coast, making their home in fields, deserts and other areas. They are one of the first butterflies to appear in early spring and their bright colors add a touch of sparkle to their newly emerging green environment.

Butterflies are generally categorized as one of two types, patroller or percher, depending on mating strategies.

Sara's Orangetips fall in the patroller category of butterflies. Males patrol, or fly up and down a particular territory, in search of female butterflies.

As it relates to butterfly photography, the patrollers are sometimes difficult subjects because you can follow them for up to an hour without their settling down on a flower long enough for a decent picture.


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