Oslar's Roadside-Skipper - Amblyscirtes oslari
[From Ferris and Brown 1981; Scott 1986; Layberry et al. 1998; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001] Forewing 1.3 cm. Forewings pointed; fringes of uppersurface gray and slightly checked at vein tips, undersurface of hindwing fringe unchecked and pale gray-brown. Uppersurface orangish-brown, unspotted (faint apical forewing spots rare), male stigma small and dark. Undersurface of forewing with discal area orangish-brown, hindwing tawny gray with paler gray postmedian band.
One flight, June to early July northward, mid-May to mid-June in Colorado; several flights southward, April through September (Scott 1986). Mid-May to early September (Glassberg 2001). June to early July in Canada (Layberry et al. 1998). Mid-May to early July in the Rocky Mountain states (Ferris and Brown 1981). Late April to mid-July in Colorado (Scott and Scott 1978; Scott and Epstein 1987), late May to late June in north-central Nebraska (Dankert and Nagel 1988), mid-May to late June in western North Dakota (McCabe and Post 1976), July to September in southern Arizona (Bailowitz 1988).
Best determined by a combination of pointed forewings, fringes gray and slightly checked, uppersurface orangish-brown, unspotted (faint apical forewing spots rare), undersurface of forewing discal area orangish-brown, hindwing tawny gray with paler gray postmedian band.
Southern Alberta and southern Saskatchewan south along the Rocky Mountain foothills and western Great Plains in weastern North and South Dakota, western Nebraska, western Kansas, to Arizona, New Mexico, western Texas, northern Mexico (Scott 1986; Layberry et al. 1998; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001), usually below 2134 m elevation, but up to 2987 m, in the Rocky Mountain states (Ferris and Brown 1981), 1585 m to 2987 m elevation in Colorado, but usually below 2286 m (Brown 1957; Scott and Scott 1978). In Montana, reported from at least 10 counties in the eastern 2/3 of the state, as far west as Lewis and Clark County (Kohler 1980; Stanford and Opler 1993; FLMNH Lepidopteristis' Society database; Butterflies and Moths of North America database), 841 m to at least 1341 m elevation. Rare to uncommon, except locally common in Colorado (Glassberg 2001).
Non-migratory. In Arizona, a low mobility species (Bock et al. 2007).
Prairie ravines, canyon bottoms, open woodlands, stream beds, badlands (Ferris and Brown 1981; Scott 1986; Bailowitz 1988; Dankert and Nagel 1988; Layberry et al. 1998; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001); found only in undeveloped exurban sites in Arizona (Bock et al. 2007). Habitat in Montana not described but probably similar.
Larval food plants are grasses, including Andropogon (multiple species) and Bouteloua (multiple species), also Bromus in captivity (Ferris and Brown 1981; Scott 1992, 2006; Layberry et al. 1998). Adults feed on flower nectar (including Apocynum, Cirsium, Hedysarum, Lathyrus, Monarda, Oxytropis, Penstemon, Symphoricarpos) and mud (Scott 2014).
Limited information. Females lay eggs singly on underside of host plant leaves. Larvae feed on host plant leaves, build silk-tied leaf-tube nests, hibernate (diapause) as fully-fed mature (L5?) instar, adults eclose (emerge from pupae) in about 15 days in captivity (Scott 1992, 2006). Males perch throughout the day in sandy patches of gully bottoms, roadside ditches, awaiting passing females (Scott 1975b, 1986).
- Literature Cited AboveLegend: View Online Publication
- Bailowitz, R.A. 1988. Census of the butterflies of the National Audubon Society Appleton-Whittell Research Ranch, Elgin, AZ. Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera. 27:120-128.
- Bock, C.E.;R.A. Bailowitz; D.W. Danforth; Z.F. Jones; and J.H. Bock. 2007. Butterflies and exurban development in southeastern Arizona. Landscape and Urban Planning. 80:34-44.
- Brown, F.M. 1957. Colorado Butterflies. Proceedings; Numbers Three through Seven. Denver Museum of Natural History, Denver, Co.
- Dankert, N.E. and H.G. Nagel. 1988. Butterflies of the Niobrara Valley Preserve, Nebraska. Transactions of the Nebraska Academy of Sciences 16:17-30.
- Ferris, C.D. and F.M. Brown (eds). 1981. Butterflies of the Rocky Mountains. Univ. of Oklahoma Press. Norman. 442 pp.
- Glassberg, J. 2001. Butterflies through Binoculars: A Field Guide to the Butterflies of Western North America. Oxford University Press.
- Kohler, S. 1980. Checklist of Montana Butterflies (Rhopalocera). Journal of the Lepidopterists' Society 34(1): 1-19.
- Layberry, R.A., P.W. Hall, and J.D. LaFontaine. 1998. The Butterflies of Canada. University of Toronto Press. 280 pp. + color plates.
- McCabe, T.L. and R.L. Post. 1976. North Dakota butterfly calendar (including possible strays). Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera 15:93-99.
- Opler, P.A. and A.B. Wright. 1999. A field guide to western butterflies. Second edition. Peterson Field Guides. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, Massachusetts. 540 pp.
- Scott, J.A. 1975b. Mate-locating behavior of western North American butterflies. Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera 14:1-40.
- Scott, J.A. 1986. The butterflies of North America: a natural history and field guide. Stanford University Press, Stanford, California.
- Scott, J.A. 1992. Hostplant records for butterflies and skippers (mostly from Colorado) 1959-1992, with new life histories and notes on oviposition, immatures, and ecology. Papilio new series #6. 185 p.
- Scott, J.A. 2006. Butterfly hostplant records, 1992-2005, with a treatise on the evolution of Erynnis, and a note on new terminology for mate-locating behavior. Papilio new series #14. 74 p.
- Scott, J.A. 2014. Lepidoptera of North America 13. Flower visitation by Colorado butterflies (40,615 records) with a review of the literature on pollination of Colorado plants and butterfly attraction (Lepidoptera: Hersperioidea and Papilionoidea). Contributions of the C.P. Gillette Museum of Arthopod Diversity. Fort Collins, CO: Colorado State University. 190 p.
- Scott, J.A. and G.R. Scott. 1978. Ecology and distribution of the butterflies of southern central Colorado. Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera 17(2): 73-128.
- Scott, J.A. and M.E. Epstein. 1987. Factors affecting phenology in a temperate insect community. American Midland Naturalist 117(1): 103-118.
- Stanford, R.E. and P.A. Opler. 1993. Atlas of western USA butterflies: including adjacent parts of Canada and Mexico. Unpubl. Report. Denver and Fort Collins, Colorado 275 pp.
- Additional ReferencesLegend: View Online Publication
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- Allen, T.J., J.P. Brock, and J. Glassberg. 2005. Caterpillars in the field and garden: a field guide to the butterfly caterpillars of North America. Oxford University Press.
- Brock, J.P. and K. Kaufman. 2003. Kaufman Field Guide to Butterflies of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, New York, NY 284 pp.
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