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Butterflies of Maryland -- Satyrium kingi

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Butterflies of North America

Butterflies of Maryland

King's Hairstreak (Satyrium kingi)
JPG -- species photo

King's Hairstreak (Satyrium kingi [Klots & Clench])

Wing span: 1 1/8 - 1 1/2 inches (3 - 3.8 cm).

Identification: Hindwing with 1 long and 1 short tail. Underside light brown; hindwing margin indented above second tail; tail-spot blue with an orange cap.

Life history: Eggs are laid singly on host twigs and hatch the next spring. Caterpillars feed on leaf buds and leaves.

Flight: One flight from May-June.

Caterpillar hosts: Common sweetleaf (Symplocos tinctoria), the only North American native of the sweetleaf family (Symplocaceae).

Adult food: Allegheny chinquapin and sourwood are the only reported nectar sources.

Habitat: Hardwood hammocks, wooded streams, swamp edges.

Range: Maryland south along the Atlantic coastal plain and Gulf states, west to eastern Texas.

Conservation: Listed as a species of special concern in several states. Populations and their habitats should be conserved where found.

The Nature Conservancy Global Rank: G3 - Very rare or local throughout its range or found locally in a restricted range (21 to 100 occurrences). (Threatened throughout its range).

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.

Author: Jane M. Struttmann

State and Regional References:

Glassberg,  J.  1993.  Butterflies Through Binoculars: A Field Guide to 
     Butterflies in the Boston-New York-Washington Region.  Oxford Univ. Press, 
     New York, N.Y.  160 pp.

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.      

Woodbury, E.N.  1994.  Butterflies of Delmarva.  Delaware Nature Society, Inc.,
     Tidewater Publishers, Centreville, MD.  138 pp.  [NOTE: this book only 
     treats True Butterflies (Papilionoidea).  It does not treat Skippers
     (Hesperioidea).]
King's Hairstreak (Satyrium kingi)
distribution map
map legend

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