Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Purple-washed Skipper
Panoquina lucas (Fabricius, 1793)


Family: Hesperiidae
Subfamily: Hesperiinae
Identification: Upperside is dark brown with some pale spots; male forewing has an elongated spot in the cell. Underside of hindwing is dull brown with a straight line of blue or white spots. Female has a blue or purple sheen.
Wing Span: 1 3/16 - 1 3/4 inches (3 - 4.5 cm).
Life History: Caterpillars feed on leaves.
Flight: Several broods; August-December in South Texas, throughout the year in Mexico.
Caterpillar Hosts: Sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum), rice (Oryza sativa), Johnson grass (Sorghum halepense), and other grasses.
Adult Food: Flower nectar including that from Lantana.
Habitat: Openings in subtropical scrub, forest edges, and nearby fields.
Range: Argentina north through tropical America and the West Indies to northern Mexico. A regular stray north to the lower Rio Grande Valley of South Texas; rarely to central Texas and southeast Arizona.
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

National Moth Week was July 23-31, 2022!

Moths are amazing creatures. Take photographs and share your moth sightings with us to document the moths where you live. Learn more.