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Look for Butterflies Everywhere
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Common BuckeyeButterflies are fun and easy to observe. They can be found everywhere from your back yard to stream banks to fields. Look for butterflies everywhere you go. Every habitat has it's own butterfly community.

Warm sunny days between mid-April and mid-October are especially good times to hunt for butterflies. The flight periods of some species last only a few weeks, so look often.

The best possibilities are open areas and in dappled light along forest edges, especially where flowers are in bloom. Butterflies are particularly sensitive to sudden movements and changes in light. Move smoothly like a stalking cat and avoid casting a shadow over the butterfly. Close-focusing binoculars allow for detailed survey of a butterfly's markings without getting close enough to frighten the butterfly away.

Your own backyard is a good place to start looking for butterflies. When looking for good spots, consider what most butterflies like: sunshine and flowers. Open areas with natural vegetation, especially those with many types of plants, are good spots to search for butterflies. The variety of butterflies increases with the size and diversity of the habitat.

When deciding between lookalike species, check to see if the species is found in the habitat you are observing and whether it flies at the time of year you are there. Behavioral characteristics can also be helpful, and interesting to observe. For example, the Eastern-tailed Blue and Spring Azure look alike but tend to occupy different zones. While the Spring Azure is often seen at shoulder height or above, look for the Eastern-tailed Blue skirting across low-growing wildflowers and grasses.