“Nebraska Lepidoptera” Blog

Another Dainty Sulfur Record

Master Naturalist Colin Croft contacted me to report another county record for the Dainty Sulfur (Nathalis iole), this one from Scotts Bluff County where he has sighted/photographed it on numerous occasions. Many thanks Colin!! That leaves eight counties without iole records. We likely won’t get them knocked out this year but be on the lookoutContinue reading “Another Dainty Sulfur Record”

Godspeed AEJZ927 et al

Thursday afternoon (9/16) we went looking for Monarch butterflies to tag during their migration to Mexico. Waiting for them to find our asters in the yard had not proven to be a winning strategy so we went to a patch of alfalfa where they had been numerous in the past. The weather was warm enoughContinue reading “Godspeed AEJZ927 et al”

Spurge Hawkmoths

Recently (Aug 29) Diane Miller noticed a large number (20+) of big colorful caterpillars on an ornamental spurge in Platte County. After doing some research we decided they were Spurge Hawkmoths (Celerio euphorbiae), European cousins of our abundant (Celerio lineata). Steve Spomer verified our determination. According to Steve (who keeps Sphnix Moth distribution maps forContinue reading “Spurge Hawkmoths”

Two More County Records

Monday, after a weekend visit to Keller State Recreation Area northeast of Ainsworth, Pat and Diane Miller, Jen and I road tripped to Boyd County to check out the local butterfly fauna. We made our way to Hull Lake SWMA, near a highway but still off the beaten path. Butterflies were not abundant but weContinue reading “Two More County Records”

Monarch Tagging Time

Where did the summer go? Suddenly it’s August and time to consider doing some citizen science and tag migrating Monarchs. Monarchwatch.org (a University of Kansas outreach program) is the sponsoring organization. Check out their website for full details, but briefly – you order the kit containing labels and instructions on the tagging procedure. You tagContinue reading “Monarch Tagging Time”

Distribution Map Updates – Part 1

I just finished updating the distribution maps for all 215 butterfly species that have been recorded from Nebraska. Six butterflies have been recorded from all 93 counties – Red Admirals (Vanessa atalanta), Painted Ladies (Vanessa cardui), Monarchs (Danaus plexippus), Common Wood Nymphs (Cercyonis pegala), Orange Sulphurs (Colias eurytheme) and Cabbage Whites (Pieris rapae). Another 14Continue reading “Distribution Map Updates – Part 1”

First Record of Giant Swallowtail in Garfield County and the Beginning (maybe) of the late Summer Southern Invasion

On July 30 René McMullen sent a picture of a swallowtail butterfly she took in Garfield County to her nephew (and my friend) Jon Nikkila. Jon correctly identified it as a Giant Swallowtail (Heraclides cresphontes). Upon checking the records it was discovered that this butterfly had not yet been recorded from that county. Jon noted thatContinue reading “First Record of Giant Swallowtail in Garfield County and the Beginning (maybe) of the late Summer Southern Invasion”

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