Alabama Butterfly Atlas

Butterfly: Wingspan: 1 3/8 - 1 11/16 inches (3.5 - 4.3 cm).  The upperside is brown with no markings. The underside of the hindwing has a row of oval, elongated eyespots that are encircled by a red line.

ID Tip: Oval rather than flattened eyespots within reddish-orange lines on ventral hindwing

Egg: Pearly globe deposited singly on host plant

Caterpillar: Green with narrow, light stripes; two short tails; two tiny reddish horns on head. Partially grown lavae overwinter.

Chrysalis: Grassy green

Until 1999, the species we now know as Helicta Satyr was included in a group of very similar butterflies known as Georgia Satyrs. Based on slight differences in wing markings as well as perceived habitat differences, Helicta Satyrs were given species status. Renowned lepidopterist Ron Gatrelle formally named and described Helicta Satyr based in part on specimens he collected near Foley, Alabama. However, species delineation of Helicta and Georgia Satyr remains murky and confusing.  In the Coastal Plain, where both reside, many individuals display field marks of both species, making their identities too close to call. Much more research is needed to determine the exact differences between these two species.

Distribution and Abundance

A dot on the county map indicates that there is at least one documented record of the species within that county. In some cases, a species may be common throughout the county, in others it may be found in only a specific habitat. The High Count information shows the highest numbers recorded for this species as well as when and where they occurred.

The sightings bar graphs depict the timing of flight(s) within each of three geographic regions. Place your cursor on a bar within the graph to see the number of individuals recorded during that period.

The abundance calendar displays the total number of individuals recorded within each week of the month. Both the graphs and the calendar are on based data collection that began in 2000.

The records analyzed here are only a beginning. As more data is collected, these maps and graphs will paint a more accurate picture of distribution and abundance in Alabama. Submit your sightings to

Sightings in the following counties: Baldwin, Shelby

  • Sightings in the past 5 years
  • Sightings in the past 5 - 10 years
  • Sightings more than 10 years ago

High count(s):

  • 5 - Baldwin - 6/14/2015
  • 1 - Baldwin - 10/13/2017
  • 1 - Shelby - 8/27/1960
County Distribution Map

View county names by moving the mouse over a county or view a map with county names

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
5 1 1 2 2


Grassy roadsides in dry, open pine forests. Reportedly occurs in more upland habitats than Georgia Satyr, but more research is needed to determine exact habitat requirements and species distribution.

Host and Nectar Plants

Various sedges (Carex spp.) and grasses (family Poaceae) are suspected.

No host plant has yet been verified in Alabama.

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