North American Butterflies and Moths List

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Butterflies of North America

Hedgerow Hairstreak (Satyrium saepium)
JPG -- species photo

Hedgerow Hairstreak (Satyrium saepium [Boisduval])

Wing span: 1 - 1 1/4 inches (2.5 - 3.2 cm).

Identification: Upperside metallic copper-brown. Forewing of male with black (sometimes pale) oval spot along leading edge. Underside brown with blue spot near tail; other markings not prominent.

Life history: Males perch on low vegetation. Females lay eggs singly on buds, leaves, and twigs of host plant. Eggs hatch the following spring; caterpillars eat buds and uppersides of leaves.

Flight: One flight from April-September.

Caterpillar hosts: Ceanothus species in the buckthorn family (Rhamnaceae).

Adult food: Flower nectar including yerba santa and wild buckwheats.

Habitat: Chaparral, open forest, brushy oak woodlands.

Range: British Columbia south through California into Baja California; east through northern Arizona to northern New Mexico, Colorado, and Montana.

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.


Brown, J. W., Real, H. G., and Faulkner, D. K. Butterflies of  Baja California. 
    1992. Lepidoptera Research Foundation,  Inc., Beverly Hills, CA.  129 pages, 
    8 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

Hedgerow Hairstreak (Satyrium saepium)
distribution map
map legend

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