Arkansas first began to adopt its own official state symbols in 1901. Many more have been adopted since then, and a state symbol can come in the form of animals, mammals, a state bird and flower, trees, fruits, vegetables, amphibians, nicknames, insects, and much more.

State symbols were adopted by states to best represent their cultural makeup and the natural wonders that are inherently unique to that state. Like all other states, there are many Arkansas state symbols that epitomize the state and have typically been chosen based on the dedicated research efforts of people and students of the state.

Arkansas State Butterfly

The Arkansas state butterfly is the Diana Fritillary (Speyeria diana). The unusual yet beautiful butterfly has been officially representing Arkansas since 2007.

Arkansas state butterfly

The males are known for their dark brown bodies and orange markings, whereas the females are known for being larger, having a black body accompanied by blue and white markings.

These creatures can be found residing in the humid and moist mountain ranges that cover the state, typically feeding on flower nectar during the months of summer.

Facts About the Arkansas State Butterfly

These majestic butterflies are not just a symbol of Arkansas, they have some pretty awesome qualities and habits too. Here are some interesting facts about the Diana Fritillary that you probably didn’t know:

  • They do not just reside in Arkansas, they live in most southern and eastern states too.
  • Their natural habitat is sunny woodland areas, mountain ranges, and forest edges.
  • These butterflies have an impressive wingspan, reaching up to and over 4 inches (11.3 cm).
  • Before becoming butterflies, their caterpillar hosts are Violets (Viola species).
  • The males and females couldn’t look more different from each other, the image below displays a male Diana Fritillary, and above you will see the female.

Arkansas state butterfly

Final Thoughts

Most states will have their symbols showcase emblems or iconic representations of the state’s culture and history, but some of the more interesting ones are those that are indicative of the state, its history, and its heritage, and the Natural State puts its history and what it stands for across very well in the Arkansas state insect.

This interesting fact about Arkansas and a whole host of others is what makes the state so unique and fascinating to those that live there or are researching the various symbols of the state.