North American Butterflies and Moths List

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Butterflies of North America

Butterflies of Florida

Eastern Pygmy-Blue (Brephidium isophthalma)
JPG -- species photo

Eastern Pygmy-Blue (Brephidium isophthalma [Herrich-Schäffer])

Wing span: 3/4 - 7/8 inch (2 - 2.2 cm).

Identification: Tiny. Upperside copper brown. Underside hindwing and fringes dark brown.

Life history: Males patrol low over the host plants in search of females. Flight is weak and slow.

Flight: May-August in Georgia, throughout the year in Florida. Number of broods has not been determined.

Caterpillar hosts: Annual glassworts (Salicornia species) in the goosefood family (Chenopodiaceae).

Adult food: In Florida, nectar from palmetto palm and saltwort (Batis maritima) flowers.

Habitat: Near saltwater in coastal marshes and tidal flats.

Range: South Carolina south along the Atlantic coastal plain to both coasts of Florida and the Keys, west along the Gulf Coast to Louisiana. Occasionally strays to Texas and inland.

Conservation: Not usually required.

The Nature Conservancy Global Rank: G5 - Demonstrably secure globally, though it may 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.

Author: Jane M. Struttmann

State and Regional References:

Gerberg, E.J. and Arnett, R.H., Jr.  Florida Butterflies.  Natural Science
     Publications, Inc.  Baltimore, MD.  90 pp.

Kimball, C.P.  1965.  Arthropods of Florida and Neighboring Land Areas - Vol. 1:
     Lepidoptera of Florida.  Div. of Plant Industry, State of Florida Dept. 
     of Agriculture.  Gainesville, FL.  363 pp. 

Minno, M.C. and Emmel, T.C.  1993.  Butterflies of the Florida Keys.  Scientific
     Publishers.  Gainesville, FL.  168 pp.
Opler, P.A. 1998. A field guide to eastern butterflies, revised format.
     Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston.     

Smith, D.S., Miller, L.D. and Miller, J.Y.  1994.  The Butterflies of the West
     Indies and South Florida.  Oxford Univ. Press.  Oxford, U.K.  264 pp.
Eastern Pygmy-Blue (Brephidium isophthalma)
distribution map
map legend

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