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Butterflies of North America -- Thorybes mexicana

North American Butterflies and Moths List

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Butterflies of North America

Mexican Cloudywing (Thorybes mexicana)
JPG -- species photo

Mexican Cloudywing (Thorybes mexicana [Herrich-Schäffer])

Wing span: 1 1/8 - 1 3/8 inches (2.9 - 3.5 cm).

Identification: Upperside is brown; forewing with large, dark-edged clear spots. Male has no costal fold. Underside is mottled brown and black with grayish outer margins; hindwing with brown striations.

Life history: To wait for females, males perch on or near the ground on hilltops. Females lay eggs singly under host plant leaves.

Flight: One flight from June-August.

Caterpillar hosts: Clover (Trifolium), wild pea (Lathyrus), and vetch (Vicia).

Adult food: Flower nectar.

Habitat: Alpine and subalpine meadows, slopes, and clearings.

Range: High elevation mountains of the western United States south into Mexico.

Conservation: Not usually required.

The Nature Conservancy Global Rank: G4 - Apparently secure globally, though it might be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.

Management needs: None reported.

References:

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

Mexican Cloudywing (Thorybes mexicana)
distribution map
map legend

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