Fatal Metalmark (Calephelis nemesis [W. H. Edwards])
Wing span: 3/4 - 1 inch (2 - 2.5 cm).
Identification: Male forewing pointed. Upperside brown with slightly darker median bands; fringes checkered.
Life history: Eggs are laid singly on host plant leaves, which the caterpillars eat.
Flight: All year in south Texas, May-October in California.
Caterpillar hosts: Seepwillow (Baccharis glutinosa), perhaps virgin's bower (Clematis species).
Adult food: Flower nectar.
Habitat: Brushy or weedy areas along roadsides, washes, ditches, and streams.
Range: Southern California through the Southwest to central Texas, south to southern Mexico.
Conservation: Widespread and common. Most populations are not of concern, but endemic California subspecies may be in jeopardy.
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. Tilden, J. W. 1986. A field guide to western butterflies. Houghton-Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass. 370 pages, 23 color plates.
Author: Jane M. Struttmann
State and Regional References:
Ferris, C.D. and F.M. Brown. 1980. Butterflies of the Rocky Mountain States. University of Oklahoma Press. Norman. 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. Tilden, J.W. and A.C. Smith. 1986. A Field Guide to Western Butterflies. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass. Add Toliver, M., Holland, R., and S.J. Cary. 1996. Distributional data for New Mexico Butterflies. Privately published. Albuquerque, N.M.