Yellow-tipped Flasher (Astraptes anaphus [Cramer])
Wing span: 2 - 2 1/2 inches (5.1 - 6.4 cm).
Identification: Tailless. Upperside of wings is dark brown with faint black bands. Lower tip of hindwing has wide yellow edging above and below.
Life history: When inactive, adults rest on the upperside (and ocassionally underside) of broad leaves. Caterpillars feed gregariously but each makes a separate leaf shelter.
Flight: April-May and September-November in South Texas; many flights beginning in March in Mexico.
Caterpillar hosts: Vines in the pea family (Fabaceae).
Adult food: Flower nectar, bird droppings, or dung.
Habitat: Lowland tropical forest or scrub.
Range: Argentina north through Central America to the West Indies and Mexico. Strays to the lower Rio Grande Valley, Texas.
Conservation: Not necessary for a rare stray.
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 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. Smith, D. S., L. D. Miller, and J. Y. Miller. 1994. The butterflies of the West Indies and South Florida. Oxford University Press, Oxford. 264 pages, 32 color plates.
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.