Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Black Checkerspot
Chlosyne cyneas (Godman & Salvin, 1878)

Family: Nymphalidae
Subfamily: Nymphalinae
Identification: Upperside dark brown with brownish-red marginal spots and two neat rows of white spots. Underside white, cream, or yellow with black veins; median black band contains a row of light spots.
Wing Span: 1 3/8 - 1 5/8 inches (3.5 - 4.2 cm).
Life History: Males perch and sometimes patrol during the day on hilltops to find females. Eggs are laid in groups on the underside of host plant leaves. Caterpillars feed on leaves and flowers; young ones live together in a loose web. Third-stage caterpillars hibernate.
Flight: Many broods from April-September.
Caterpillar Hosts: Brachystigma in Arizona and Seymeria tenuisecta in Mexico. Also Castilleja.
Adult Food: Flower nectar including seep willow.
Habitat: Mountain meadows and openings in Ponderosa pine, oak, and pinyon woods.
Range: Rare in the United States. Southern Mexico north to southeastern Arizona.
Conservation: Conserve as much United States habitat as possible.
NCGR: G4 - Apparently secure globally, though it might be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management Needs: Prevent overgrazing and improper logging practices in United States habitats.
Comments: The caterpillar host plant spelling was corrected to Brachystigma from Brachiostygma.