Dun Skipper

Euphyes vestris

Summary 5

The Dun Skipper, Sedge Witch or Dun Sedge Skipper (Euphyes vestris) is a species of butterfly in the Hesperiidae, subfamily Hesperiinae. The adult dun skipper is especially attracted to white, pink, or purple flowers including fireweed, common milkweed, purple vetch, lotus, selfheal, peppermint, dogbane, and New Jersey tea.

Description 5

The dun skipper has a wingspan of 1 to 1¼ inches. The uppersides of its wings are dark brown. The underside of its wings are tan. The male has a black stigma on his forewings. A stigma is a patch of scent scales found on the forewing of some species of male butterflies. The female may have light white spots on the uppersides and undersides of her forewings. In some groups of dun skippers, the upperside of their head and thorax may be a yellowish-orange.

Larva Description 5

Head black with a large, white "M" shaped mark. Body pale green with white reticulations; dorsal stripe darker; spiracles black.

Larval Host Plants 5

Various sedges including chufa flatsedge (Cyperus esculentus) and sun sedge (Carex heliophila) (Cyperaceae).

GTM Occurrence 5

The Dun Skipper is considered a common species at the GTM. This species occurs along all transects. Most observations were in the open habitat along Transect A. In the forest it was most commonly observed on the Marsh Pond Overlook (Transect B). This species occurs in low number in June, July, and October with peak abundance in September. There have been 58 specimens observed as of December 28, 2015.

Distribution 5

Nova Scotia west across southern Canada to southern Alberta; south to Florida, the Gulf Coast, and eastern Texas. Separate populations in the high plains and Rocky Mountains, and on the Pacific Coast.

Habitat 5

The dun skipper is found in moist areas including woodland edges, roadsides, bogs, gardens, meadows, stream edges, and swamp edges.

Nature serve conservation status 6

Rounded Global Status Rank: G5 - Secure

Sources and Credits

  1. (c) Dendroica cerulea, some rights reserved (CC BY), http://www.flickr.com/photos/33472394@N00/4857868945
  2. (c) Anita Gould, some rights reserved (CC BY-NC), https://www.flickr.com/photos/anitagould/307239272/
  3. (c) Aaron Carlson, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA), https://www.flickr.com/photos/59003943@N00/9463382258/
  4. (c) gtmresearchreserve, all rights reserved, uploaded by GTMResearchReserve, http://www.inaturalist.org/photos/2885392
  5. (c) GTMResearchReserve, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA)
  6. (c) NatureServe, some rights reserved (CC BY-NC), http://eol.org/data_objects/28764260

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