cobweb skipper (Hesperia metea)
CONFIRMATION STATUS: Confirmed.
FAMILY: Skippers (Hesperiidae)
SUBFAMILY: Grass Skippers (Hesperiinae)
IDENTIFICATION: Wings are dark brown or blackish with few light areas.
Underside of hindwing has a cobwebbed appearance due to white spots
extending along the veins. Subspecies licinus in Texas and Arkansas is
very dark both above and below.
LIFE HISTORY: To wait for females, males perch near the host plants all
day. Females lay eggs singly on or near the host plants. Caterpillars eat
leaves and live in nests of rolled or tied leaves. Fully-grown caterpillars
FLIGHT: One brood from late March to early June.
WING SPAN: 1 1/8 - 1 3/8 inches (2.9 - 3.5 cm).
CATERPILLAR HOSTS: Beard grasses including little bluestem (Andro-
pogon scoparius and Andropogon scoparius var. glomeratus) and big
bluestem (Andropogon gerardi).
ADULT FOOD: Nectar from flowers of low-growing plants such as Labrador
tea, wild strawberry, blackberry, bird's-foot violet, winter cress, and red
clover; also lilac, vervain, Carolina larkspur, and wild hyacinth.
HABITAT: Dry, grassy openings in woods, pine barrens, oak savannah,
open sandy scrub, burned areas, old pastures.
RANGE: Patchy distribution from southern Maine west to Wisconsin;
south to central Georgia, the Gulf States, and central Texas.
CONSERVATION: Not usually required.
NATURESERVE GLOBAL STATUS: G4 - Apparently secure globally,
though it might be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the
MANAGEMENT NEEDS: None reported.
SKY MEADOWS OCCURRENCE:
Note: Due to seasonal conditions in this region, occurrence may vary from
year to year. The designation of occurrence may range over two or more
categories and may vary even during a single season.
Key to Checklist
A Abundant: Easy to see very large numbers of individuals in appropriate habitat
at proper time of year.
C Common: Usually each to see good numbers of individuals in appropriate habitat
at proper time of year.
U Uncommon: Sometimes found in appropriate habitat and proper time of year,
usually in low numbers.
O Occasional: Found in appropriate habitat perhaps only a few times a year, usually
in low numbers.
R Rare: Small chance of being found, even in appropriate habitat at proper time of
year. There are few individuals and may not be present every year.
X Extirpated: Formerly present, no longer occurs in Sky Meadows Park.
Crooked Run Valley