The Meadow Argus Butterfly (Junonia villida) is a fairly common butterfly that is found throughout Australia. In Sydney they are seen throughout most of the year, with reports of the occasional large migration in the eastern states, both southerly during spring and northerly in autumn.

The male and female butterfly are similar in appearance. The wings have upper brown surfaces with orange and white markings, and blue eye spots. The male blue spots are surrounded by a dark brown ring, which is in turn surrounded by an orange circle. There is a large eye spot at the outer margin of each forewing, and two smaller eye spots on each hindwing.

The caterpillar of the Meadow Argus can be black or brown and are spiky, the spike being thick, short and branched.

The following images of a particularly battered Meadow Argus.

The Meadow Argus can often be seen sunbathing, resting on the ground or close to the ground with their wings in flat position, facing towards the sun. The male butterflies of the species are known to defend their territory, which over time leads to the battered looking wings, as seen here.


  • Scientific classification
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Lepidoptera
  • Family: Nymphalidae
  • Genus: Junonia
  • Species: J. villida
  • Binomial name: Junonia villida

Footnote & References

  1. Meadow Argus, Junonia villida calybe (Godart), Data Sheet, South Australian Butterflies & Moths, https://sabutterflies.org.au/nymp/villida.html
  2. Junonia villida, Coffs Harbour Butterfly House, http://lepidoptera.butterflyhouse.com.au/nymp/villida.html
  3. Meadow Argus, iNaturalist, https://www.inaturalist.org/guide_taxa/767412
  4. Junonia villida, Meadow Argus, about Tasmania, https://about-tasmania.com.au/project/meadow-argus/