North American Butterflies and Moths List

The definitive website on wildbirds & nature

The Registry of Nature Habitats

U.S. Geological Survey

Butterflies of North America

Butterflies of Utah

Arctic Blue (Agriades glandon)

Arctic Blue (Agriades glandon [de Prunner])

Wing span: 7/8 - 1 inches (2.2 - 2.6 cm).

Identification: Geographically variable. Upperside of male gray-blue, female orange-brown; both sexes with dark cell spots on both wings. Underside hindwing with postmedian black spots lacking or enclosed by white patches.

Life history: Eggs are laid singly on leaves, bracts, or sepals of the host plant. Caterpillars or chrysalids hibernate.

Flight: One brood from early May to late September, mainly June-August.

Caterpillar hosts: Possibly Diapensia lapponica, Dodecatheon, and Androsace septentionalis.

Adult food: Flower nectar.

Habitat: Bogs, tundra, gravelly hills, alpine fell-fields, and subalpine meadows.

Range: Holarctic. Alaska east to Newfoundland, south through the mountains of the West to Washington, northern Arizona, and northern New Mexico.

Conservation: Not usually of conservation concern.

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: Study conservation needs and implement if necessary.


Ferris, C.D. and F.M. Brown. 1981. Butterflies of the Rocky Mountain States. University of Oklahoma Press, Norman. 442 pages.

Layberry, R.A., P.W. Hall, and J.D. Lafontaine. 1998. The Butterflies of Canada. 
     University of Toronto Press, Toronto. 282 pages, 32 color plates.

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.

Tilden, J. W. 1986. A field guide to western butterflies.  Houghton-Mifflin Co., 
     Boston, Mass. 370 pages, 23 color plates.

Author: Jane M. Struttmann

State and Regional References:

Ferris, C.D. and F.M. Brown. 1980. Butterflies of the Rocky Mountain States. 
     University of Oklahoma Press. Norman.

Opler, Paul A. 1999. Peterson Field Guide to Western Butterflies, revised 
     edition. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass.

Stanford, R.E. and P.A. Opler. 1993. Atlas of Western USA Butterflies. 
     Privately published, Denver, Colo. 

Tilden, J.W. and A.C. Smith. 1986. A Field Guide to Western Butterflies. 
     Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass.
Arctic Blue (Agriades glandon)
distribution map
map legend

Return to species list
Return to Butterflies of North America main page