2020 – A look back (Season Summary)

Every year I compile a Season Summary to submit to the Lepidopterists’ Society highlighting new county/state records for butterflies, new moth species for the state and anything other interesting finds. I’ll briefly summarize what I reported this year.

2020 turned out to be a pretty good year diversity wise.  Roughly a dozen observers recorded 113 butterfly species from the state which I believe to be the highest recent one year total.  In spite of that there were only seven county records.   There were some good finds including the second record of M Hairstreak, from Fontenelle Forest (Joanne Langabee) a Satyrium caryaeovorum record (one of only a handful) from Steve Spomer, and a Speyeria callippe record (first since 1997?) from Dr. Brust in the Pine Ridge. Northern Pearly Eye’s were a little more common than usual. There were also notable absences including Papilio bairdii, Pontia sisymbrii and Chlosyne fulvia.  There were a few southern strays recorded but nothing widespread or overly abundant.

County records included Sachem Skipper – Sioux County (Jonathan Nikkila), Hobomok Skipper – Lincoln County (Neil Dankert), Giant Swallowtail – Butler County (Jeri Glenn), Ruddy Copper – Garden County (Neil and Jennifer Dankert), Snout Butterfly – Franklin County (Neil and Jennifer Dankert), Northern Pearly Eye – Saunders County (Lori Tomes), and Queen – Garden County (Neil and Jennifer Dankert).

Three dedicated reporters added 28 new moth species to the state list bringing that total to 1347.   Moth reporters are special people and deserve some recognition. I’ll try to highlight some of their finds in later posts.

For a list of butterflies found in the state (last year or from the beginning of time), or from any county contact me at nebraskabutterflies@gmail.com. I’d also be happy to send you the moth spreadsheet.

Stay warm!!

Neil

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