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Limenitis archippus is commonly known as "viceroy" because it is similar but smaller than a monarch butterfly. However, it is only distantly related to monarchs and other milkweed butterflies of the subfamily Danainae. The mimetic relationship between North American milkweed butterflies and the viceroy was shown to be Müllerian, meaning that both species are unpalatable and hence contribute to each others' protection from birds.