Ruddy Hairstreak (Electrostrymon sangala [Hewitson])
Wing span: 7/8 - 1 inch (2.2 - 2.6 cm).
Identification: Two tails on the hindwing. Upperside orange to orange-brown; underside tan with red postmedian line.
Life history: In Colombia, males perch on hilltop shrubs to seek receptive females.
Flight: Many broods from April-December in South Texas; from April-January in Central America.
Caterpillar hosts: : Flowers of coral-bean (Erythrina), probably others.
Adult food: Flower nectar from many plants including Waltheria and Casearia.
Habitat: Openings and edges in tropical semideciduous river forests, second growth, tropical thorn-scrub.
Range: South Texas through Central America to Venezuela.
Conservation: Any permanent U.S. populations should be protected.
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: Locate populations and protect their habitat.
Neck, R.W. 1996. A field guide to butterflies of Texas. Gulf Publishing Co., Houston, Texas. 323 pp. 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 and Paul A. Opler