North American Butterflies and Moths List

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U.S. Geological Survey

Butterflies of North America

Western Cloudywing (Thorybes diversus)
JPG -- species photo

Western Cloudywing (Thorybes diversus Bell)

Wing span: 1 1/4 - 1 1/2 inches (3.2 - 3.8 cm).

Identification: Upperside is dull brown with small pale spots. Males lack a costal fold. Underside is dull brown with gray scaling at margins; hindwing with indistinct dark bands.

Life history: To await females, males perch in small forest openings. Eggs are laid singly on the host plant.

Flight: One brood from June-July.

Caterpillar hosts: Cow clover (Trifolium wormskjoldii) in the pea family (Fabaceae).

Adult food: Flower nectar.

Habitat: Small openings in coniferous forests.

Range: Local and scarce. South Cascade mountains of Oregon and the Sierra Nevada of California.

Conservation: Seems to require open forest understory in yellow pine forests. Forest succession or replacement due to fire suppression may be a threat.

The Nature Conservancy Global Rank: G3 - Very rare or local throughout its range or found locally in a restricted range (21 to 100 occurrences). (Threatened throughout its range).

Management needs: None reported.


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

Western Cloudywing (Thorybes diversus)
distribution map
map legend

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