Butterfly Season Begins

Flowers are blooming everywhere you go at Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo. Right now, yellow flowers are particularly conspicuous and abundant at the pond. The flowers in the photograph are called tickseed or Coreopsis palmata. All these blossoms make the boardwalk a prime habitat for butterflies looking to drink nectar from flowers.

The butterfly in the photo is an eastern tiger swallowtail. This is one of the largest and brightest species of butterfly I’ve seen at the boardwalk. Be sure to keep an eye out for it next time you visit. It isn’t usually hard to spot, but with all the yellow flowers that have sprung up around the pond, it might blend in, as it does in the photo. Finding one can be a bit of a challenge, but it’s well worth the effort.

Vicky Hunt


I saw the most amazing orange wild flowers in the Nature Boardwalk this weekend. They are clumps of tiny star shaped flowers in blazing orange. Does anyone know the name of them?

Director of Horticulture Brian Houck says, "Butterfly milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa). This one is famed for being a host to the caterpillar stage of the monarch butterfly. The horn-shaped seeds pods will open to release silky, wind-dispersed seeds later in the season."

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