Feniseca tarquinius

The Harvester is found almost entirely in woodland habitat. It is unique among butterflies in that its larvae are carnivorous and feed upon woolly aphids. Prior to 2005, I had seen this species only four times, all close to water, and the individuals were either sunning themselves or getting nutrients from scat.

Weekly sightings for Harvester

Identifying characteristics

A small butterfly with a wingspan up to 1.25 inches. The upper surface has mainly black margins and an orange interior, with black spots on the frontwing. Below, the Harvester has some orange on the front, but the hind wing is distinguished by the the reddish brown color and distinctive white-outlined markings.

Similar species

Not likely to be confused with any other butterfly in Wisconsin.


Found in woodland habitats especially near water.


The Harvester is triple-brooded in Wisconsin and can be found from May to late August.


More common in forested areas of the state; less common in the south.

Early Harvester Sightings

Date County Reported by
Apr 14, 2012 Jackson Mike Reese
Apr 14, 2012 Marquette Dan Sonnenberg
Apr 16, 2021 Oconto Douglas Buege
Apr 22, 2017 Dane Ann Thering and Dave Eide
Apr 24, 2012 Jackson Daniel Jackson


Map showing sighting locations for Harvester
Map key
HarvesterClick to enlarge

West of Wazee Park, Jackson Co., WI. May 21, 2005.

HarvesterClick to enlarge

West of Wazee Park, Jackson Co., WI. May 21, 2005. Same individual as photo above.

HarvesterClick to enlarge

Comstock Bog SNA, Marquette Co., WI. June 22, 2005.