Other Common Names
Australian Admiral

I've seen these butterflies around, but never in great numbers. And when you do see one it's not easy to photograph. Normally you just get to see a colourful flash as they go by. They do fly at sub-light speeds, but only just. They often land on tree trunks, where they can be extremely well camouflaged.
I was beginning to wonder if I'd ever get any photos of them with their wings open, but at the Royal Botanic Gardens my luck changed. These butterflies suffer from the same weakness as most Vanessids - they love buddleias.

The specimen I photographed on 8th May 2004 in the Botanic Gardens was close to a patch of stinging nettles, which is the larval foodplant for this species. It was sitting on a sign giving details of the plant next to the nettles - if only it had been sitting on the sign for the nettles themselves!

Georges River National Park - March 2004
Mount Annan Botanic Garden - April 2004
North Sydney - April, September 2004
Ingleburn Reserve - April, September 2004
Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney - May 2004.