Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Arizona Powdered Skipper
Systasea zampa (W.H. Edwards, 1876)


Family: Hesperiidae
Subfamily: Pyrginae
Identification: Outer margin of hindwing has 2 deep scallops. Upperside is orange-brown with darker olive-brown areas; forewing has a transparent median band that is broken below the cell.
Wing Span: 1 - 1 1/2 inches (2.5 - 3.8 cm).
Life History: To await females, males perch all day in gulches.
Flight: Several broods from April-October.
Caterpillar Hosts: Possibly various plants in the mallow family (Malvaceae).
Adult Food: Flower nectar.
Habitat: Canyons, washes, and other openings in desert, thorn forest, and brushland.
Range: Southern California, Arizona, New Mexico, and west Texas.
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.
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.