Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Leanira Checkerspot
Chlosyne leanira (C. Felder & R. Felder, 1860)

Family: Nymphalidae
Subfamily: Nymphalinae
Identification: Quite variable. Upperside ranges from black to orange, with light spots. Underside of hindwing is cream-colored with black veins; wide black median band surrounds cream-colored spots.
Wing Span: 1 3/8 - 1 3/4 inches (3.5 - 4.5 cm).
Life History: Males perch and sometimes patrol on hilltops for females. Eggs are laid in bunches on underside of lower leaves of host plant. Caterpillars feed on leaves and flowers; young ones live together in a loose web. Third-stage caterpillars hibernate.
Flight: One flight from April-July.
Caterpillar Hosts: Paintbrush (Castilleja species).
Adult Food: Flower nectar.
Habitat: Open prairies, canyons, desert hills, foothills, washes, roadcuts.
Range: Local, in scattered populations. Western Oregon south to California, Nevada, Utah, and western Colorado; Baja California.
Conservation: Colonies in California have probably declined due to invasion of exotic grasses and resultant increased fire frequency.
NCGR: G4 - Apparently secure globally, though it might be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management Needs: None reported.
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