North American Butterflies and Moths List

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Butterflies of North America

Butterflies of Kentucky

Striped Hairstreak (Satyrium liparops)
JPG -- species photo

Striped Hairstreak (Satyrium liparops [LeConte])

Wing span: 1 - 1 1/2 inches (2.5 - 3.9 cm).

Identification: Hindwing with 1 long and 1 short tail. Upperside dark brown; male with a long, oval spot along forewing costa. Underside of both wings with rows of widely separated white stripes; blue spot near tails topped with orange. Outer margin of hindwing indented above short tail.

Life history: Males perch on foliage within 6 feet of the ground to watch for females. Eggs are laid singly on twigs of host plants and hatch the following spring. Caterpillars feed on buds, leaves, flowers, and young fruit.

Flight: One flight from July-August in the north, May in the south.

Caterpillar hosts: Several woody trees and shrubs in the rose (Rosaceae) family including American plum; and heath (Ericaceae) family; also reports for hornbeam, oak, and willow.

Adult food: Nectar from chinquapin, common milkweed, dogbane, goldenrod, meadowsweet, New Jersey tea, staghorn sumac, viburnum, and white sweet clover.

Habitat: Deciduous forest openings and edges, prairie streamsides, shaded swamps, acid barrens, prairie copses.

Range: Local, not abundant in its range. Rocky Mountains south from southern Canada to Colorado, east to Maine, south to Florida.

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.

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:

Covell, Charles.  1998.  The Butterflies and Moths (Lepidoptera) of Kentucky: 
     an Annotated Checklist.  Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission, 
     Frankfort, KY.

Layberry, R.A., Hall, P.W. & Lafontaine, D.J., 1998.  The Butterflies of 
     Canada.  University of Toronto Press, Toronto, ON.  280 pp.
Opler, P.A. 1998. A field guide to eastern butterflies, revised format.
     Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston.      
Striped Hairstreak (Satyrium liparops)
distribution map
map legend

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