Western Green Hairstreak - Callophrys affinis
[From Ferris and Brown 1981; Scott 1986; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001; Pyle 2002] Forewing 1.2-1.3 cm. Lacks tail; fringes tend towards white. Uppersurface usually gray to orange-brown in some areas; undersurface grainy blue-green with varying amounts of white spots in a mostly-straight median line (from no spots to nearly solid but thin), most populations with variable extent of pale brown on posterior portion of forewing.
One flight; usually May to June (March to early May in California, June to July at higher elevations in Colorado) (Scott 1986). February to April in southern California, mid-April to June in the Pacific Northwest, April to July in the Rocky Mountains depending on elevation and latitude (Glassberg 2001). Mid-May to early July in the Rocky Mountain states (Ferris and Brown 1981), late May to early August in Colorado (Scott and Scott 1978), early April to mid-July in Oregon and Washington (Pyle 2002), mid-May to mid-July in Oregon (Warren 2005), early May to early June in British Columbia (Guppy and Shepard 2001).
Best determined by the undersurface grainy blue-green with varying amounts of white spots in a mostly-straight median line (from no spots to nearly solid but thin), most populations with variable extent of pale brown on posterior portion of forewing.
Southern British Columbia and northern Montana south through most of the western US to northern Baja California and the Sierra Madre of western Mexico (Scott 1986; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001); 1830 m to 2440 m elevation in the Rocky Mountain states (Ferris and Brown 1981), 1643 m to 3048 m elevation in Colorado (Brown 1957; Scott and Scott 1978; Gorelick 2005), 2012 m to 2774 m elevation in Utah (Gorelick 2005), 914 m to 2926 m elevation in Oregon (Warren 2005). In Montana, reported from 14 counties in the western half of the state (Kohler 1980; Stanford and Opler 1993; Gorelick 2005), from 1189 m to 2256 m elevation. Common to abundant in southern California, locally uncommon to uncommon elsewhere (Glassberg 2001).
Forest openings, sand dunes, chaparral, dry gullies, sagebrush steppe, mountain summits, openings with rocky soils (Ferris and Brown 1981; Scott 1986; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001; Guppy and Shepard 2001; Pyle 2002; Warren 2005). In Montana, reported from prairie, breaks, rocky ridges (Gorelick 2005); in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, reported from montane meadows dominated by sagebrush (Debinski and Pritchard 2002; Debinski et al. 2013).
Larval food plants include Ceanothus and several species of Eriogonum (Scott 1986, 1992, 2006; Pyle 2002; Gorelick 2005; Warren 2005). Adults feed on flower nectar (including Aletes, Antennaria, Apocynum, Astragalus, Barbarea, Berberis, Ceanothus, Comandra, Cryptantha, Eriogonum, Harbouria, Heterotheca, Jamesia, Lesquerella, Phacelia, Potentilla, Prunus, Ribes, Rudbeckia, Senecio, Thlaspi) and mud (Gorelick 2005; Scott 2014).
Females lay eggs singly and usually tucked out of sight on host plant flower buds, sometimes leaves (Scott 1986, 1992, 2006). Eggs hatch in about 5-6 days (depending on temperature), develop from L1 instar to L4 instar and pupation in 23-34 days (depending on temperature). Pupation likely occurs in litter under host plants, adults eclose (emerge from pupae) in 12-23 days after exiting diapause and depending on temperature (James and Nunnallee 2011). Larvae solitary, build no nest, eat flowers and young fruits and sometimes leaves, overwinter as pupae; adults may live 19 days (Scott 1979, 1986; James and Nunnallee 2011). Males perch on shrubs or sticks above the ground throughout the day in gulches, open slopes, and on hilltops or ridge crests while awaiting passing females (Scott 1975b, 1986; James and Nunnallee 2011).
- 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.M. and J.A. Pritchard. 2002. A field guide to the butterflies of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Lanham, MD: Roberts Rinehart Publishers. 107 p.
- Debinski, D.M., J.C. Caruthers, D. Cook, J. Crowley, and H. Wickham. 2013. Gradient-based habitat affinities predict species vulnerability to drought. Ecology 94(5): 1036-1045.
- 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.
- Gorelick, G.A. 2005. A review of Callophrys affinis (W.H. Edwards), with descriptions of two new subspecies from New Mexico and Mexico. Journal of the Lepidopterists' Society 59(4): 181-199.
- 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.
- 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.
- Additional Sources of Information Related to "Insects"