Coral Hairstreak - Satyrium titus
[From Ferris and Brown 1981; Scott 1986; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001; Pyle 2002] Forewing 1.3-1.7 cm. Tailless, but with tail stub. Uppersurface brown, male with paler sex patch on forewing. Undersurface brown, hindwing with marginal row of coral red spots capped inwardly with white-edged black line, postmedian row of black spots and dashes circled with white, lacks blue patch near base of tail stub.
One flight; late May to early July southward, mid-July to August northward and at high elevation (Scott 1986). June to August but mainly July to early August (Glassberg 2001). late June to mid-August in Colorado (Scott and Scott 1978), late June through August in Oregon (Warren 2005), late May to early September in Oregon and Washington (Pyle 2002), late may to early September in British Columbia (Guppy and Shepard 2001).
Best determined by undersurface brown, hindwing with marginal row of coral red spots capped inwardly with white-edged black line, postmedian row of black spots and dashes circled with white, lacks blue patch near base of tail stub.
Across southern Canada from British Columbia to Quebec, south in the west to northeastern California, southern New Mexico, northeastern Texas and Oklahoma, and south in the east throughout the eastern US to northern Alabama, Mississippi, and Georgia (Scott 1986; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001); 1310 m to 2896 m elevation in Colorado (Brown 1957; Scott and Scott 1978; Ferris and Brown 1981), 457 m to 2134 m elevation in Oregon (Warren 2005). In Montana, reported from most counties across the state (Kohler 1980; Stanford and Opler 1993). Uncommon to common east of the continental divide, locally rare west of the divide (Glassberg 2001).
Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations:
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(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)
Open foothills, shrubby and wooded areas, canyons, edges, trail sides, creek shores, hedgerows, usually near water (Scott 1986; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001; Pyle 2002). In Montana, reported from edges between forest and meadow openings (Debinski 1993); reported from scree slopes in Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (Debinski and Pritchard 2002).
Larval food plants include Amelanchier, several species of Prunus (the primary host), and Rosa (Scott 1986, 1992; Pyle 2002; James and Nunnallee 2011). Adults feed on flower nectar (including Apocynum, Asclepias, Ceanothus, Chrysothamnus, Cirsium, Clematis, Cleome, Cryptantha, Eriogonum, Geranium, Heterotheca, Lupinus, Melilotus, Monarda, Opuntia, Prunus, Pycnanthemum, Rhus, Rudbeckia, Senecio, Solidago, Symphoricarpos, Symphyotrichum) and mud (Tooker et al. 2002; Pyle 2002; Scott 2014).
Females lay eggs singly on host plant twigs or crevices and glued in place, also laid in litter at base of host plant (Scott 1986, 1992, 2006). Eggs hatch about 4-5 days after overwintering (depending on temperature), L1 instar developes to L4 instar and pupa in 23 days, adults eclose (emerge from pupae) in about 22 days (James and Nunnallee 2011). Eggs hibernate, larvae nocturnal, build no nest, feed on host leaves and fruits, rest at base of host plant during day, attended by ants (including Formica pilicornis), pupate under debris at base of host plant (Scott 1979, 1986; James and Nunnallee 2011). Males perch on hilltop shrubs or trees during mid-day to await passing females, may mate on larval host plant (Scott 1975b, 1986).
- Literature Cited AboveLegend: View Online Publication
- Brown, F.M. 1957. Colorado Butterflies. Proceedings; Numbers Three through Seven. Denver Museum of Natural History, Denver, Co.
- Debinski, D. 1993. Butterflies of Glacier National Park, Montana. Occasional Papers of the Museum of Natural History, the University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas. No. 159: 1-13.
- Debinski, D.M. and J.A. Pritchard. 2002. A field guide to the butterflies of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Lanham, MD: Roberts Rinehart Publishers. 107 p.
- 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.
- Guppy, C.S. and J.H. Shepard. 2001. Butterflies of British Columbia: including western Alberta, southern Yukon, the Alaska Panhandle, Washington, northern Oregon, northern Idaho, northwestern Montana. UBC Press (Vancouver, BC) and Royal British Columbia Museum (Victoria, BC). 414 pp.
- James, D.G. and D. Nunnallee. 2011. Life histories of Cascadia butterflies. Corvallis, OR: Oregon State University Press. 447 p.
- Kohler, S. 1980. Checklist of Montana Butterflies (Rhopalocera). Journal of the Lepidopterists' Society 34(1): 1-19.
- 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.
- Pyle, R.M. 2002. The butterflies of Cascadia: a field guide to all the species of Washington, Oregon, and surrounding territories. Seattle Audubon Society, Seattle, Washington. 420 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. 1979. Hibernal diapause of North American Papilionoidea and Hesperioidea. Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera 18(3): 171-200.
- 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.
- 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.
- Tooker, J.F., P.F. Reagel, and L.M. Hanks. 2002. Nectar sources of day-flying lepidoptera of central Illinois. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 95(1): 84-96.
- Warren, A.D. 2005. Lepidoptera of North America 6: Butterflies of Oregon, their taxonomy, distribution, and biology. Contributions of the C. P. Gillette Museum of Arthropod Diversity, Colorado State University. Fort Collins, Colorado. 406 pp.
- Additional ReferencesLegend: View Online Publication
Do you know of a citation we're missing?
- 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.
- Layberry, R.A., P.W. Hall, and J.D. LaFontaine. 1998. The Butterflies of Canada. University of Toronto Press. 280 pp. + color plates.
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