Tuesday, June 19, 2012

A couple of iconic skippers at Maravillas Ranch

Maravillas Ranch:  Private property ~ 15 or so miles south of Marathon, Brewster Co., TX

Skippers:  family Hisperiidae.

In the early stages of my trek today, I came across this guy:

Texas Powdered- ........, wait.

Do you all see the that white median band?  The band on the forewings, up front, the fairly sharp white band?  See how that white band is jagged?  That means...

Arizona Powdered-Skipper (Systasea zampa).

Kind of cool for Texas, occurring in the trans-Pecos of the Lone Star.
I'll meet up with (S. pulverulenta), Texas Powdered-Skipper, soon enough.  This was a nice late in the survey discovery when I cycled through the day's images; as it happened almost butterfly number one.

There was Cogia hippalis, Acacia Skipper, in the same vicinity.  I already photo'd that guy up at the Gage Garden's back grassland. How great is Brewster Co.?  Even north Brewster Co.?  Lepidoptera, butterflies and moths, are starting to get fun out here.  Diversity is picking up nicely.

Then there was this old friend near the end of my work day surveying at Maravillas Ranch:

Common Streaky-Skipper (Celotes nessus)

I have a varied audience here.
To some of you:  No, I did not bring a jar, nor net, nor laboratory in the field today.  I'll stick with C. nessus today rather than .... limpia.

Back to the bug in the photo, hypnotic right?  It is always a joy to come across.

Here is the total species list, that I could come up with, for this morning's Maravillas Ranch butterfly activity:

FOY = First of the Year

Battus philenor, Pipevine Swallowtail
Papilio polyxenes, Black Swallowtail
Pontia protodice, Checkered White
Colias eurytheme, Orange Sulphur
Zerene cesonia, Southern Dogface
Abaeis nicippe, Sleepy Orange
Nathalis iole, Dainty Sulphur
Eurema mexicana, Mexican Yellow, still good numbers
Phoebis sennae, Cloudless Sulphur
Kricogonia lyside, Lyside Sulphur
Strymon melinus, Gray Hairstreak
Atlides halesus, Great Purple Hairstreak, one semi-worn male, FOY
Leptotes marina, Marine Blue
Echinargus isola, Reakirt's Blue
Calephelis nemesis, Fatal Metalmark, many fresh adults in one area of property
Agraulis vanillae, Gulf Fritillary
Euptoieta claudia, Variegated Fritillary
Phyciodes tharos, Pearl Crescent
Phycoides phaon, Phaon Crescent
Anthanassa texana, Texan Crescent
Polygonia interrogationes, Question Mark
Junonia coenia, Common Buckeye
Asterocampa celtis, Hackberry Emporer
Libytheana carinenta, American Snout
Danaus gilippus, Queen
Cogia hippaus, Acacia Skipper
Systasea zampa, Arizona Powdered-Skipper, FOY
Common/White Checkered-Skipper, Pyrgus communis/albescens
Celotes nessus, Common Streaky-Skipper, FOY
Copaeodes aurantiaca, Orange Skipperling
Amblyscirtes eos, Dotted Roadside-Skipper

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