Butterfly Books, Rochester Butterfly Club, 2009

With notes by Norma Platt and Carol Southby



Burris, Judy and Wayne Richards, 2006. The Life Cycles of Butterflies, Storey Publishing.
Amazing pictures of all the stages in the life of  “23 Common Garden Butterflies” plus range maps.

Cech, Rick and Guy Tudor, 2005. Butterflies of the East Coast, an Observer’s Guide, Princeton University Press.
A must have book for anyone interested in learning more about what our butterflies do. The only book that shows caterpillar food plants.  Now in paperback

Eisner, Thomas, 2003.  For Love of Insects, Belknap Publishing of Harvard University Press.
(from the coverleaf) ‘Eisner’s book makes readers participants in the grand adventure of discovery on a scale infinitesimally small and infinitely surprising.’  

Halpern, Sue, 2002.  Four Wings and a Prayer: Caught in the Mystery of the Monarch Butterfly, Vintage (paperback).
An exploration into the life and migration of the monarch butterfly.

Pyle, Robert Michael, 1992.  Handbook for Butterfly Watchers, Houghton Mifflin.
A very readable introduction to many aspects of butterfly watching and the lives of butterflies.

Pyle, Robert Michael, 1999.  Chasing Monarchs: Migrating with the Butterflies of Passage, Houghton Mifflin.
A butterfly expert follows monarchs in the west as they migrate and makes some new discoveries.

Russell, Sharman Apt, 2003.  An Obsession with Butterflies: Our Long Love Affair with a Singular Insect, Perseus Publishing.
Interesting presentation of human and butterfly behavior and natural history.

Schappert, Phil, 2002.  A World for Butterflies: their lives, behavior and future, Firefly Books.
A large format book with lots of glossy photos and fascinating information.

Stokes, Lillian and Donald, Ernest Williams, 1991. The Butterfly Book: An easy Guide to Butterfly Gardening,  Identification and Behavior, Little Brown. 
An inexpensive large format book with lots of color pictures. A good general introduction to butterflies.


FIELD GUIDES, Butterflies

Brock, Jim P. and Kenn Kaufman, 2003. Butterflies of North America, Kaufman Focus Guides; Houghton Mifflin.
If you only want to take one field guide when traveling, this would be a good choice. It includes virtually all species from North America, including many tropical strays seen near the Mexican border, in a book that is smaller than most of the Glassberg series.

Glassberg, Jeffrey, 1993. Butterflies through Binoculars: a field guide to butterflies in the Boston, New York, Washington region, Oxford University Press.
For our area, this is still the easiest one to use in the field. It includes nearly all the species in western New York without too many extra ones to deal with. Not usually in stores, so needs to be special-ordered.

If you are traveling further afield, the following three books also by Jeffrey Glassberg are very useful.
Glassberg, Jeffrey (all through Oxford University Press)
1999. Butterflies through Binoculars: the East.
2001. Butterflies through Binoculars: the West : a field guide to the butterflies of western North America.
With Marc C. Minno and John V. Calhoun, 2000. Butterflies through Binoculars: Florida.

Holland W.J. 2003. The Field Guide to Butterflies, Main Street. 
An updated version of a classic. Includes most of the common species from our area. The photographs in the book were taken by Rochester Butterfly Club members Steven Daniel and Carol and David Southby.



Tekulsky, Mathew, 1985.  The Butterfly Garden: Turning your garden, window box or backyard into a beautiful home for butterflies, Harvard Common Press.
An excellent introduction to the subject of butterfly gardening and about butterflies too.

Xerces Society/Smithsonian Institution, 1990.  Butterfly Gardening: Creating summer magic in your garden,     Sierra Club Books.             Each chapter is written by a different butterfly specialist. This book will entertain, with      information about lives of butterflies and moths as well as helpful information on butterfly gardening.



Allen, Thomas J., James P. Brock and Jeffrey Glassberg, 2005.  Caterpillars in the Field and Garden – A field guide to the butterfly caterpillars of North America (Butterflies Through Binoculars Series), Oxford University Press.           
Excellent pictures of butterfly caterpillars with range maps and occasional  pictures of adult butterflies. 

Wagner, David L., 2005. Caterpillars of Eastern North America, Princeton Field Guides
Stunning photos of caterpillars of a wide selection of butterflies and moths, plus smaller pictures of the adults. Particularly useful, because most of the caterpillars we see are moths, but unless you know roughly what it is, you will need to turn a lot of pages to make an identification.


Wright, Amy Bartlett, 1992.  Caterpillars: Peterson First Guides, Houghton Mifflin.
A small but useful book with illustrations of caterpillar, adult, and some eggs and pupae of common butterflies and moths of North America.



Covell, Charles V. Jr. 2005. A Field Guide to the Moths of Eastern North America, Special Publication / Virginia Museum of Natural History, Paperback.
This, our most comprehensive book for moths, was out of print for many years. Republished in 2005 and available for a while, hopefully it will  become available again.

If you would like to download this list for printing, you can find it here.