Alternate Common Name: Arota Copper.
This species occurs in scattered portions of Oregon, California, and Nevada, and from southeastern Idaho south to Arizona and New Mexico, again in scattered patches.
It can be found in open woodlands, mountain meadows, chaparral, and sagebrush steppe.
Caterpillars feed on the leaves of currant and gooseberry (Ribes spp.).
Adult: Butterflies drink flower nectar, and appear to prefer white and yellow flowers. They can also be observed sipping berry juice and obtaining moisture and salts from mud.
Eggs overwinter and hatch in the spring. There is one generation of caterpillars each year. Each caterpillar undergoes four stages of growth, called instars. Adults generally fly from the end of May through September. Butterflies tend to remain in one location. The thin "tail" on each of the hindwings of adults is thought to mimic insect antennae and thus misleads bird predators into biting at the wrong end and only getting a mouthful of wing, while the butterfly escapes in the other direction.
Males perch to wait for receptive females, and may occasionally patrol. White eggs are laid singly on twigs, dead leaves, or on ground debris near host plants.
|Idaho Status:||Unprotected nongame species.|
|Global Rank:||Varies with subspecies. Subspecies Lycanea arota nubila of California is ranked as T1, which means it is critically imperiled because of extreme rarity and is imminently vulnerable to extinction.|
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