North American Butterflies and Moths List

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Butterflies of North America

Zilpa Longtail (Chioides zilpa)
JPG -- species photo

Zilpa Longtail (Chioides zilpa [Butler])

Wing span: 1 1/2 - 2 5/16 inches (3.9 - 5.9 cm).

Identification: Each hindwing has a long tail. Wings are dark gray-brown; forewing has pale spots. Underside of hindwing is mottled and has a trapezoidal white patch.

Life history: Not reported.

Flight: March-April and September-November in South Texas; all year in Mexico and Central America.

Caterpillar hosts: Not reported; presumably legumes.

Adult food: Flower nectar.

Habitat: Tropical scrub and nearby edges.

Range: Ecuador north through Central America to Mexico. Regularly strays to South Texas and southeast Arizona.

Conservation: Not necessary for 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

Zilpa Longtail (Chioides zilpa)
distribution map
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