The white admiral or red-spotted purple [Limenitis arthemis] is a polytypic species of North American brush-footed butterfly, common throughout much of the eastern United States. Limenitis arthemis astyanax has red spots on its underside and the top of the wings are notable for their iridescent blue markings. Limenitis arthemis arthemis on the other hand has a large white band traversing both the forewings and hindwings.
The red-spotted purple is a mimic of the poisonous Pipevine Swallowtail [Battus philenor] and is typically found in open woodlands and along forest edges.
Four subspecies of the butterfly are known:
Limenitis arthemis arthemis – [American] white admiral
Limenitis arthemis rubrofasciata – western [American] white admiral, characterised by the absence of blue spots on its inferior wings
Limenitis arthemis astyanax – red-spotted purple or red-spotted admiral, no white bands on wings
Limenitis arthemis arizonensis – Arizona red-spotted purple, it has no white bands on wings