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Posts Tagged ‘butterfly’

Long-tailed skipper larvae are characterized by fine black middorsal and broader yellow subdorsal stripes.

 

The first larva encountered during the Orlando trip was the long-tailed skipper larva above. In the south this species may produce three generations during a single year. The larvae feed concealed within a leaf shelter by drawing up the edges of a single leaf or silking together two or more overlapping leaves.

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Male skipper (orange) mating with lighter colored female.

 

The warm mid-October weather has led to a flurry of activity at the University of Illinois Arboretum. Honeybees are out in numbers larger than anything I have observed over the past year and the number of skippers is extraordinarily high. Swarms of male skippers seem to surround each female.

I’m hoping to get some better mating photos later this week.

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Male common checkered skipper showing the characteristic hairy, stocky body and wide set, hooked antennae that collectively serve as spot characteristics for identifying skippers. Click image to enlarge.

 

Male common checkered skippers are blue-gray; females are black. Males patrol most actively in the afternoon, courting and mating immediately when they encounter a receptive female.

Adults feed on nectar from a variety of plants.

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