Fluttering across South Texas
By Allison Flores
The Cuero Record
Having to clean your windshield a bit more than normal? That may be due to migrations of the American snout-nosed butterfly.
If you’re like me and thought these butterflies were monarchs (because what other butterfly migrates in Texas?), you are wrong.
Migrations like these happen every several years for the snout butterflies, but this year, according to Texas Parks and Wildlife, is a big and noticeable one.
Doing a bit of research, snout butterflies, named for their elongated mouthparts (labial palpi), migrate in such tremendous swarms when a period of intense drought is followed by heavy rains.
This makes sense considering we had a very hot and dry August and a wetter September.
Ben Hutchins with Texas Parks and Wildlife writes that “drought periods may help reduce parasites that impact snout populations, and when heavy rains follow, snout caterpillars are assured to have an abundant supply of their favorite foods: fresh hackberry leaves.”
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