Two-spotted Skipper (Euphyes bimacula [Grote & Robinson])
Wing span: 1 1/4 - 1 5/8 inches (3.2 - 4.2 cm).
Identification: Forewings are pointed, fringe is white. Underside of head and body are white. Upperside is dark brown; male forewing with reddish orange patch, female forewing with 2 pale spots. Underside of hindwing is orange-brown with pale veins and a white anal fold.
Life history: Males perch within 3 feet of the ground in sedge marshes to watch for females. Caterpillars eat leaves and live in nests of rolled or tied leaves. Half-grown caterpillars hibernate.
Flight: One brood in the north from June-July; two broods in the south from May-August.
Caterpillar hosts: Hairyfruit sedge (Carex trichocarpa).
Adult food: Nectar from flowers including pickerelweed, sweet pepperbush, blue flag, common milkweed, and spiraea.
Habitat: Marshes, bogs, wet streamsides, and wet sedge meadows.
Range: Northeast Colorado and western Nebraska; eastern Nebraska east to southern Quebec; southern Maine south to central Virginia; coastal plain south to Georgia; the Gulf Coast.
Conservation: Not usually required.
The Nature Conservancy Global Rank: G4 - Apparently secure globally, though it might be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management needs: None reported.
Opler, P. A. and G. O. Krizek. 1984. Butterflies east of the Great Plains. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore. 294 pages, 54 color plates. Opler, P. A. and V. Malikul. 1992. A field guide to eastern butterflies. Peterson field guide #4. Houghton-Mifflin Co., Boston. 396 pages, 48 color plates. Scott, J. A. 1986. The butterflies of North America. Stanford University Press, Stanford, Calif. 583 pages, 64 color plates. Stanford, R. E. and P. A. Opler. 1993. Atlas of western USA butterflies including adjacent parts of Canada and Mexico. Denver and Fort Collins, CO. Tilden, J. W. 1986. A field guide to western butterflies. Houghton-Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass. 370 pages, 23 color plates.
Author: Jane M. Struttmann
State and Regional References:
Opler, P.A. 1998. A field guide to eastern butterflies, revised format. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston.