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Butterflies of Kansas -- Poanes hobomok

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Butterflies of North America

Butterflies of Kansas

Hobomok Skipper (Poanes hobomok)
JPG -- species photo

Hobomok Skipper (Poanes hobomok [Harris])

Wing span: 1 - 1 11/16 inches (2.5 - 4.3 cm).

Identification: Wings are rounded. Upperside of male is yellow-orange with irregular black borders and no stigma; underside of hindwing has purple-gray on the inner margin. Female has 2 forms: Upperside of normal form is duller and has less orange than the male; underside of hindwing is orange with purple-gray at the inner margin. Upperside of "pocahontas" form is purple-black with some dull white spots on the forewing; underside is purple-black with the pattern obscured.

Life history: To await receptive females, males perch about 6 feet above ground on vegetation in woodland clearings. Females deposit eggs singly on or near the host grass leaves, which are eaten by the caterpillars.

Flight: One brood from April-July.

Caterpillar hosts: Various grasses including panic grasses (Panicum) and bluegrasses (Poa).

Adult food: Nectar from flowers including common milkweed, henbit, viper's bugloss, and blackberry.

Habitat: Openings and edges of damp woods, edges of bogs, light gaps along streams, city parks.

Range: Nova Scotia west across southern Canada to central Alberta; south to New Jersey, northern Georgia, Arkansas, central Kansas, and eastern Oklahoma. An isolated population ranges from central Colorado to northern New Mexico.

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.

References:

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:

Ely, C., Schwilling, M.D., and M.E. Rolfs. 1986. An Annotated List of the 
     Butterflies of Kansas. Fort Hays Studies (Science) 7,  Fort Hays State 
     University, Fort Hays, Kans.

Opler, Paul A. 1999. Peterson Field Guide to Western Butterflies, revised 
     edition. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass.

Stanford, R.E. and P.A. Opler. 1993. Atlas of Western USA Butterflies. 
     Privately published, Denver, Colo.

Tilden, J.W. and A.C. Smith. 1986. A Field Guide to Western Butterflies. 
     Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass.
Hobomok Skipper (Poanes hobomok)
distribution map
map legend

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