After spending the winter down south, the Red Admiral butterflies have stopped in New Jersey in what appear to be unusually large numbers.
Stephen Schuckman, a seasonal consultant at the Metropolitan Plant Exchange, noticed the unusual amount of Red Admirals the other day. Initially, he thought that because of the mild winter, a lot of pupae had survived and were hatching early.
After a bit of research, however, he found that the species is migrating out of the southern states into New Jersey. This could be a result of the mild winter and unusually warm early spring days we’ve experienced.
Schuckman observed that there are ,”hundreds of them at the garden center… almost everywhere.”
Red admirals have a typical lifespan of about three months and migrate north during the spring and sometimes again during the fall.
“I think this is an unusual event,” said Schuckman.