Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Sagebrush Checkerspot
Chlosyne acastus (W.H. Edwards, 1874)


Family: Nymphalidae
Subfamily: Nymphalinae
Identification: Upperside is checkered black, orange-brown, and orange; hindwing has a dark wing base and a light median band. Underside of hindwing has pearly white spots.
Wing Span: 1 1/2 - 2 inches (3.9 - 5.1 cm).
Life History: Males perch and sometimes patrol in gulches for females. Eggs are laid in batches on underside of host plant leaves and sometimes on flower buds. Caterpillars eat leaves and flowers, and feed together in groups. Third- and fourth-stage caterpillars hibernate under rocks; some diapause for months and maybe years to survive bad weather.
Flight: Two broods from June-August.
Caterpillar Hosts: Rabbitbrush (Chrysothamnus viscidiflorus) and aster (Machaeranthera) in the sunflower family (Asteraceae).
Adult Food: Flower nectar.
Habitat: Sagebrush scrub, pinyon-juniper woodlands, dry gulches.
Range: Eastern North Dakota west to eastern Washington, south to New Mexico, southern Arizona, and eastern California.
Conservation: Not usually required.
NCGR: G4 - Apparently secure globally, though it might be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management Needs: None reported. Note:This butterfly includes several subspecies including neomoegeni.
Comments: NULL

Pollinator Week is June 20-26, 2022!

Butterflies and moths are accidental pollinators of many flowering plants. While most species do not have special structures to carry pollen, they do brush against pollen and transfer it to other flowers.

Did you know? The Eastern Tailed-Blue (Cupido comyntas) flies close to the ground and uses its short proboscis to probe flowers of wild strawberry, white sweet clover, and other low-lying plants.