Riding's Satyr - Neominois ridingsii
[From Ferris and Brown 1981; Scott 1986; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001; Pyle 2002] Forewing 1.9-2.6 cm. Uppersurface sandy brown-gray, all wings crossed by postmedian band of oblong creamy-white ovals, two pupiled black spots contained in forewing band, sometimes a small eyespot in hindwing band; undersurface similar but less distinct, with light and dark irregular bands.
One flight; June to early July at low elevation, mid-July to early August at high elevation (Scott 1986); June to September (Glassberg 2001). Late June to early or mid-August in Oregon (Pyle 2002; Warren 2005).
Distinctive; best determined by color and uppersurface of all wings crossed by postmedian band of oblong creamy-white ovals, two pupiled black spots contained in forewing band, sometimes a small eyespot in hindwing band.
Southern Alberta, Saskatchewan, and southwestern Manitoba south through Colorado and western Nebraska to central Arizona and central New Mexico, west to southern Oregon, eastern California, and Nevada; isolated population in North Dakota (Scott 1986; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001; Pyle 2002); to at least 3050 m elevation in the Rocky Mountain states, rarely to 3962 m (Scott and Scott 1978; Ferris and Brown 1981), to at least 2500 m elevation in southern Oregon (Warren 2005). In Montana, reported from most counties east of the continental divide (Kohler 1980; Stanford and Opler 1993; FLMNH Lepidopterists' Society database). Locally rare to locally common (Glassberg 2001).
Non-migratory. Average adult lifetime movement < 120 m (Scott 1986).
Shortgrass prairie, sagebrush steppe, open grassy woodland, dry grassy meadows (Ferris and Brown 1981; Scott 1986; Opler and Wright 1999; Glassberg 2001; Pyle 2002). Habitat not described for Montana but likely similar.
Larval food plants include the grasses Agropyron, Bouteloua (the usual host), Koeleria, and Stipa (Scott 1986, 1992, 2006). Adults feed infrequently on flower nectar, including Achillea, Astragalus, Chrysothamnus, Cryptantha, Eriogonum, Helianthus, Heterotheca, Hymenopappus, Hymenoxys, Melilotus, Penstemon, Sedum, and Senecio (Scott 2014).
Females lay eggs singly on host grasses or nearby on shrubs or forbs, either green or dead. Larvae build no nest. Hibernation (overwintering) occurs as L3 or L4 instars, rarely as L2; where biennial in California, probably overwinter as young larvae the first winter, as old larvae the second (Scott 1979, 1986, 1992, 2006); pupae suspended from grass or formed in leaf litter at base of grass bunch (Ferris and Brown 1981). Males perch on the ground (seldom patrol) until mid-day on small grassy hilltops, mesas, and saddles to await passage of females, which they then pursue. Average lifespan 11 days in cooler years, 5 days in hotter years (Scott 1975b, 1986; Warren 2005).
- Literature Cited AboveLegend: View Online Publication
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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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