Species Details

Nymphalis antiopa

University of Alberta E.H. Strickland Entomological Museum Read more about this collection »

Common NameMourning Cloak SeasonalityOne brood per year, appearing in early spring (April to May) and again in August to October. IdentificationThe deep brown upperside rimmed with blue spots and a powder-yellow margin is unmistakable. Spring specimens are flight-worn and are faded to maroon-brown with yellowish-white margins. The Mourning Cloak is remarakbly consistent in appearance across its vast North American range, and there are no recognized subspecies (Layberry et al. 1998, Guppy & Shepard 2001).

Scientific Name Nymphalis antiopa Common Name Mourning Cloak Habitat Found in virtually all habitats throuhgout the province, particularly near moist and riparian woods. Seasonality One brood per year, appearing in early spring (April to May) and again in August to October. Identification
The deep brown upperside rimmed with blue spots and a powder-yellow margin is unmistakable. Spring specimens are flight-worn and are faded to maroon-brown with yellowish-white margins. The Mourning Cloak is remarakbly…
The deep brown upperside rimmed with blue spots and a powder-yellow margin is unmistakable. Spring specimens are flight-worn and are faded to maroon-brown with yellowish-white margins. The Mourning Cloak is remarakbly consistent in appearance across its vast North American range, and there are no recognized subspecies (Layberry et al. 1998, Guppy & Shepard 2001).
Life History
The eggs are laid in clusters on the hostplant, and the caterpillars initially live in colonies (Scott 1986). The larvae possess branched spines, and are velvety black with small white spots and a line of dorsal red…
The eggs are laid in clusters on the hostplant, and the caterpillars initially live in colonies (Scott 1986). The larvae possess branched spines, and are velvety black with small white spots and a line of dorsal red spots (Guppy & Shepard 2001). The adults are one of the longest-lived species in Alberta, and can live to be nearly a year old since they hatch in July or August, overwinter, and are occasionally found into June of the following year. Because they sometimes appear on warm winter days, Mourning Cloaks can be seen in almost any month of the year.
Conservation Not of concern. Diet Info
The larvae feed on various trees including elm (Ulmus spp.) and poplars (Populus spp.), and particularly willows (Salix spp.) (Layberry et al. 1998). Adults prefer tree sap and mammal scat to flower nectar.
The larvae feed on various trees including elm (Ulmus spp.) and poplars (Populus spp.), and particularly willows (Salix spp.) (Layberry et al. 1998). Adults prefer tree sap and mammal scat to flower nectar.
Range This species has a wide distribution throughout the northern hemisphere, occuring from Great Britain across Eurasia and from Alaska south to central Mexico (Opler 1999).

Citation

Page Citation for Nymphalis antiopa

Page Citation

"Nymphalis antiopa, University of Alberta E.H. Strickland Entomological Museum." University of Alberta Museums Search Site, https://search.museums.ualberta.ca/g/2-2652. Accessed 27 Oct. 2021.

Taxonomic Hierarchy

Kingdom Animalia Phylum Arthropoda Class Hexapoda Subclass Insecta Order Lepidoptera Suborder Ditrysia Superfamily Papilionoidea Family Nymphalidae Subfamily Nymphalinae Genus Nymphalis Species Nymphalis antiopa
This hierarchy is created from our museum records, it may not always accurately reflect modern taxonomies.

Taxonomic Hierarchy for University of Alberta E.H. Strickland Entomological Museum