Date of Award

Spring 2000

Document Type



Life & Environmental Sciences

First Advisor

John Christenson

Second Advisor

Marilyn Schendel

Third Advisor

Joan Stottlemyer


The diversity of butterfly species in Lewis and Clark County, Montana was studied. Butterflies were captured, killed, mounted, and identified from eight locations within the county. Collection took place from June 1st to August 15th, 1999. The results were analyzed on the basis of number of species, number of individuals, location and date of capture, and sex of the butterflies. The metamorphosis from larvae to adult was also examined. This investigation demonstrated that the butterflies were mostly male, and that they differed in number of species per location. However, no difference was seen in the number of species observed or first emerging in a time period. The study revealed that the number of individuals increased as summer progressed, and that the species varied in the length of flight period and range of habitat. During the course of the study, 56 species of butterflies were seen. This analysis serves as a basis for comparison to future studies since it is the first of its kind for Lewis and Clark County.