Alabama Butterfly Atlas

Butterfly: Wingspan is 1 1/8 to 1 ½ inches (2.9-3.9 cm). The underside of the hindwing has (crossing its median wing area) rectangles of golden yellow outlined with rusty brown, and with a rusty brown wing border and wing base.  The wing borders are dusted with whitish-gray to violet. The uppersides of the wings are golden orange with irregular brown borders.  There is a black cell-end bar on the male forewing. Two distinct color forms are seen in Hobomok Skipper females. The lighter one resembles the male, while the darker form (called “Pocahontas”) superficially resembles females of the Zabulon Skipper.

Egg: Females lay their small, pale green eggs singly on blades of grass.

Caterpillar: The caterpillar is pale brown to greenish, sometimes with a pinkish hue. The body is covered with fine short hairs, giving it a velvety appearance.

Chrysalis: The chrysalis is dirty white, becoming pink toward the thorax, and is covered with a white, powdery down. Overwintering is known to take place in both the caterpillar and chrysalis stage. The caterpillars construct individual tubular leaf shelters on the host plant within which they overwinter and complete development in the upcoming spring

Males are very territorial. They sit on sunlit leaves, five to six feet above the ground, and fly out to aggressively encounter any butterflies that happen to pass by. 

The Hobomok Skipper is rather uncommon in Alabama, being found mostly in the northeastern part of the state. It has not been reported from the southern one-half of Alabama. Elsewhere, it  is distributed from central Alberta across southern Canada to Nova Scotia, south through the New England states to northwest Georgia, west to Oklahoma, and north to eastern Montana. A disjunct population occurs from New Mexico into southcentral Colorado.

 

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 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 albutterflyatlas@gmail.com.

Sightings in the following counties: Bibb, Calhoun, Cleburne, Colbert, DeKalb, Jackson, Jefferson, Madison

  • Sightings in the past 5 years
  • Sightings in the past 5 - 10 years
  • Sightings more than 10 years ago
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
2 1 1 3 10 61 6 8 1

Habitat

The Hobomok Skipper is most often found in open spaces bordering deciduous forests. This includes dirt road, fields, stream edges, parks, gardens, and damp meadows.

Host and Nectar Plants

In Alabama, the host plants for the Hobomok Skipper have not yet been documented.

In nearby states, the larvae are reported to feed most frequently on panic grasses (Panicum spp.) and bluegrasses (Poa spp.).

The Hobomok Skipper nectars from a variety of flowers.  

Landscaping Ideas