The Nebraska Natural Heritage Program and the Golden Girls

While there are no butterflies in Nebraska that are on US Fish and Wildlife’s Endangered or Threatened Species list there are quite a number of species from the state whose future is of concern, either regionally or nationally. These species are tracked by a cooperative nationwide Natural Heritage Program. Dr. Rachel Simpson (Nebraska Program DataContinue reading “The Nebraska Natural Heritage Program and the Golden Girls”

Celebrate Nebraska Pollinator Week

Nebraska Pollinator Week is June 22-28. To recognize pollinators importance to the world as we know it a number of fun activities and training opportunities have been scheduled during the month of June. Check them all out at Thanks in advance for your support!! Neil

Nebraska Statewide Arboretum Plant Sale

I got an e-mail this morning with a link to the plants they have available to buy. They have a lot of hard to find plants. If you are not a member I would encourage you to join. Happy Shopping!! They have a Senna (Cassia species) available that will attract the Sleepy Oranges featuredContinue reading “Nebraska Statewide Arboretum Plant Sale”

If you plant it they will come

For the upteenth (ok probably about 10th) straight year Sleepy Oranges (Abaeis nicippe) have found their way to my yard. Drawn by the presence of their larval hostplant Wild Senna (Cassia marilandica) they have become annual visitors, arriving each year in late spring from their home range in more southern climes. Not being widely sold,Continue reading “If you plant it they will come”

Butterfly Gardening

If it’s not to late and you haven’t already purchased all your plants for the year you might consider some plants that attract and sustain our native butterflies and pollinators. There are several great resources for our state. The first is a NebGuide by Steve Spomer and Kim Todd titled “Butterfly Gardening.” It is availableContinue reading “Butterfly Gardening”

The Oak Feeding Duskywings

In Nebraska there are three Duskywings whose larvae feed on oaks, these being Juvenal’s (Erynnis juvenalis), Horace’s (E. horatius) and Sleepy (E. brizo). Two, Juvenal’s and Sleepy, fly only in the spring while Horace’s has three flights – spring, mid and late summer. They rarely stray far from oak trees and so their distribution inContinue reading “The Oak Feeding Duskywings”

Eastern NE Anglewings (Polygonia sp.)

There are three species found in eastern Nebraska – Polygonia interrogationis, P. comma and P. progne.  They differ from most other butterflies in that they overwinter as adults and often prefer rotting fruit or tree sap over flower nectar.  These three species are quite similar in appearance and while there can be several color phases or forms the descriptions belowContinue reading “Eastern NE Anglewings (Polygonia sp.)”

Another little known NE butterfly Chlosyne fulvia – Fulvia Checkerspot

This is another “recent” discovery in the state, having first been discovered in the mid 1980s.  Once again, after being found and investigating promising habitats, it has been found at numerous locations.  This butterfly is closely associated with it’s larval hostplant Castilleja sessiliflora or Downy Paintbrush. This plant is most often found on hilltops, mainly in theContinue reading “Another little known NE butterfly Chlosyne fulvia – Fulvia Checkerspot”