Tawny Emperor (Asterocampa clyton)
These fast flying butterflies are most common around Hackberry trees. They are often found on natural vegetation and are not common in human inhabited areas. As caterpillars, they are commonly found grouped together.
An amazing behavior this caterpillar has developed is site cleaning. They remove their frass – droppings from the leaf they are occupying; this reduces the chances of being located by a parasite. These interesting butterflies love well-ripened fruit. Setting out this treat may lure this orange and black patterned butterfly to your gardens.