Thistles are another plant we can't seem to appreciate. Thistles are wonderful, not only as richnectar sources for butterflies but as host plants. Thistles of all kinds are devoured by larvae of painted ladies (Vanessa cardui), whereas the swamp metalmark (Calephelis mutica), a state threatened species, is a thistle connoisseur, feeding only on swamp thistle (Cirsium muticum), itself a state threatened species.


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