Barred Yellow (Eurema daira [Godart])
Wing span: 1 1/4 - 1 5/8 inches (3.2 - 4.1 cm).
Identification: Males and females differ; plus 2 seasonal forms. Upperside of male forewing yellow with black bar along inner edge and a large black area at apex. Female varies from yellow to white; forewing with gray-black on apex and black patch on outer edge of hindwing. Summer (wet season) form is smaller with more extensive black areas. Underside hindwing of summer form is satiny white; that of winter form is brick red or tan with two small black spots in cell. In southern Florida, some individuals have white hindwings.
Life history: Males patrol open areas for females. Females lay single eggs on the terminal growth of host plants. Caterpillars eat leaves. Non-reproductive dry season adults overwinter.
Flight: Throughout the year in the Deep South, late summer and fall as vagrant.
Caterpillar hosts: Pencil flower (Stylosanthes biflora), joint vetches (Aeschynomene species), and other plants in the pea family (Fabaceae).
Adult food: Nectar from a great variety of flowers including joint vetches and shepherd's needle.
Habitat: Tropical and subtropical dunes, pastures, open pine woods.
Range: Argentina north to the United States Deep South; stray to southern Arizona, South Dakota, South Texas, and Washington, D. C.
Conservation: Not usually required.
Management needs: None reported.
The Nature Conservancy Global Rank: G5 - Demonstrably secure globally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Devries, P. J. 1987. The butterflies of Costa Rica and their natural history. Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey. 327 pages, 50 color plates. Opler, P. A. 1989. Ecological and behavioral aspects of seasonal diphenism in Eurema daira (Pieridae, Lepidoptera). IN: Bock, J. H. and Y. B. Linhart. The evolutionary ecology of plants. Westview Press, Boulder, CO. Opler, P. A. and G. O. Krizek. 1984. Butterflies east of the Great Plains. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore. 294 pages, 54 color plates. 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:
Neck, R.W. 1996. A Field Guide to Butterflies of Texas. Gulf Publishing Co., Houston, Texas. 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. Tveten, J. and Tveten, G. 1996. Butterflies of Houston & Southeast Texas. Univ. of Texas Press, Austin, TX. 292 pp.