Teleus Longtail (Urbanus teleus [Hübner])
Wing span: 1 3/8 - 1 1/2 inches (3.5 - 3.9 cm).
Identification: Tails are long; body and wings are brown. Forewing of both sexes has a thin transparent median band; male also has 4 transparent spots at the costal margin. Male has no costal fold.
Life history: Females lay eggs on the host plants, and caterpillars eat grass blades. Young caterpillars make shelters of folded leaf blades.
Flight: Many flights throughout the year in South Texas.
Caterpillar hosts: Grasses including Panicum and Paspalum.
Adult food: Flower nectar.
Habitat: Seasonal tropical forest and scrub.
Range: Argentina north through Central America and Mexico to South Texas.
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 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.