Mottled Longtail (Typhedanus undulatus [Hewitson])
Wing span: 1 5/8 - 1 7/8 inches (4.2 - 4.8 cm).
Identification: Hindwing with a long tail. Wings are dark brown. Underside of hindwing is striated with broken black lines.
Life history: Early stages are not reported. Males perch on hilltops to await receptive females.
Flight: August-October in South Texas, December-May in the tropics.
Caterpillar hosts: Sennas (Cassia species) in the pea family (Fabaceae).
Adult food: Flower nectar.
Habitat: Arid chaparral.
Range: Argentina north through tropical America to Mexico. Occasionally 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.
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.