Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Dreamy Duskywing
Erynnis icelus (Scudder & Burgess, 1870)


Family: Hesperiidae
Subfamily: Pyrginae
Identification: Long labial palpi point forward; antennal clubs are pointed. Wings are black; forewing has no transparent spots but is dusted with gray scales and has bands of dark spots. Male has a costal fold containing yellow scent scales; female has a patch of scent scales on the 7th abdominal segment.
Wing Span: 1 1/8 - 1 1/2 inches (2.9 - 3.8 cm).
Life History: To seek females, males perch in openings, flats or depressions near woods. Females lay eggs singly on host plant leaves. Caterpillars feed on leaves and rest in leaf nests. Fully-grown caterpillars hibernate in leaf shelters.
Flight: One brood from April to early July; perhaps a rare second brood in the southern Appalachian Mountains.
Caterpillar Hosts: Willows (Salix), poplars, aspens (Populus), and occasionally birch (Betula).
Adult Food: Nectar from flowers of blueberry, wild strawberry, blackberry, Labrador tea, dogbane, New Jersey tea, winter cress, purple vetch, and lupine.
Habitat: Woodland openings or edges.
Range: Boreal North America from the Northwest Territories east across southern Canada to Nova Scotia; south in the western mountains to southern Arizona and southern New Mexico; south in the east to Arkansas, northeastern Alabama, and northern Georgia.
Conservation: Not usually required.
NCGR: G5 - Demonstrably secure globally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management Needs: None reported.
Comments: NULL