Found one time in Nebraska – Leda Hairstreak (Mimistrymon leda)

On June 24 1989 Jim Reiser and myself were out on Nebraska Highway 2 in Sheridan County (2 miles west of Ellsworth). We had found a colony of Ruddy Coppers (one of the more striking butterflies in the state) taking nectar from dogbane along the Burlington Northern railroad right of way. At some point Jim showed me an odd hairstreak he had captured. I did not recognize it either and my attention span moved on to other matters and I quickly forgot about it. So after Jim returned home he pinned up his hairstreak and, still not feeling good about making an id, ended up sending a pic to Dr. Ray Stanford for his opinion. Ray was amazed (as were we). It was a Leda Hairstreak which is a resident in the American southwest where it’s larvae feed on mesquite flowers. The next nearest record was in the Texas panhandle some 500+ miles away. And the butterfly (pictured) is in amazingly good shape. I would not expect another to ever be found in the state. I was there and I’m still not sure I believe it. Congratulations Jim!!

Leda Ministreak Ministrymon leda (W.H. Edwards, 1882) | Butterflies and Moths of North America

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