Nais Metalmark (Apodemia nais [W. H. Edwards])
Wing span: 1 1/4 - 1 3/8 inches (3.2 - 3.5 cm).
Identification: Upperside checkered with dark brown and orange-brown; forewing with white spot near tip. Forewing below is orange with black spots. Hindwing below is gray with scattered black spots; orange spots near margin and center of wing.
Life history: Males perch and patrol near the host plant for females. Eggs are laid singly on leaves or flowers. Caterpillars rest in shelters of leaves tied together with silk and emerge to feed on leaves and fruits. Mature caterpillars hibernate in leaf litter.
Flight: One brood from May-July.
Caterpillar hosts: Fendler's snowbrush (Ceanothus fendleri).
Adult food: Flower nectar.
Habitat: Open woodland, chaparral, streamsides.
Range: Rocky Mountains from central Colorado south to New Mexico, Arizona and northern Sierra Madre Occidentale of 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.
Ferris, C.D. and F.M. Brown. 1981. Butterflies of the Rocky Mountain States. University of Oklahoma Press, Norman. 442 pages. Opler, P.A. 1999. A field guide to western butterflies. Houghton-Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass. 540 pages, 44 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.
Author: Jane M. Struttmann
State and Regional References:
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.