Lead story in today’s Cincinnati Enquirer is an effort to save the vanishing Monarch butterfly.
The Monarch butterfly, you see, is very picky about where it lays its eggs. It’ll lay eggs only on a milkweed plant. Unfortunately, milkweeds are disappearing. The Cincinnati Nature Center is handing out 50,000 packets of free milkweed seeds to anyone who’ll plant them and give the Monarch butterflies a place to make their babies.
If you ignore the ugly yellow box in the upper right corner of the page, today’s Enquirer front page is gorgeous. There’s just one little problem: That ain’t a Monarch butterfly.
That’s a Tiger butterfly. Monarch butterflies have a lot more orange in them and also have a distinctive polka-dot pattern along the outer edges of its wings.
Here’s a similar shot of a tiger butterfly for comparison.
The paper has it correct in the online version of its story.
According to the cutline, the picture on page one today is a file photo. The lesson here: Never trust a caption in your archives. Always make an effort to check ’em out.
UPDATE: Sunday, 10:42 PDT
Blog reader E.L. Bayer writes to add:
The Cincinnati Enquirer graphic with the wrong butterfly also depicts the wrong plant. It’s gomphrena, not milkweed.
The digital version likewise was in error, but corrected. The reader comments on the story you linked will tell the tale.
That page one image is from the Newseum. Of course.