Butterfly: Wingspan: 1¼ to 1¾ inches (3.5 - 4.2 cm). The undersides of the wings are reddish-brown. There are three highly contrasting white spots on the hindwing. Two of these spots are so close that they almost touch, thus the name “Twin-spot”. The underside of the forewing has a couple of smaller translucent white spots visible. The upperside of the wings are dark brown, with four translucent spots on the forewing. The upperside of the hindwing is without spots.
Egg: Pink-brown eggs are laid singly on host.
Caterpillar: The early instar larvae are pale green. The mature caterpillar varies from light beige to reddish, with a reddish-brown head. Partially grown caterpillars overwinter.
Chrysalis: The chrysalis is green and covered with fine furry hairs.
The Twin-spot Skipper is a subtropical skipper that is closely associated with coastlines of the Gulf coastal states from Texas east to Florida; then along the Atlantic coastline to North Carolina. During favorable climates, this skipper may stray northward as far as New York, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sightings in the following counties: Baldwin, Barbour, Bibb, Bullock, Calhoun, Dallas, Hale, Jefferson, Macon, Marengo, Mobile, Monroe, Perry, Pike, Randolph, Russell, Shelby, St. Clair, Sumter, Tuscaloosa, Washington
View county names by moving the mouse over a county or view a map with county names
The Twin-spot Skipper inhabits the margins of a wide variety of wetland habitats, including freshwater to slightly brackish marshes, ditches, wet areas along utility right-of-ways, wet pinewoods, and open marshy and grassy fields.
In Florida, the larvae are reported to feed on grasses (Poaceae) that include Broom Sedge (Andropogon virginicus), Lopsided Indian Grass (Sorghastrum secundum), and the highly invasive Cogongrass (Imperata cylindrica).
Little Bluestem has been documented as a host plant in Alabama.
For more information about these plants, please visit the Alabama Plant Atlas using the links above.
Click on individual photos to view a larger version that includes photo credits, county, and date.
Photos with comments are indicated by a small, tan dot on the bottom right.