Comparing Hairstreaks

misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)June 15, 2011

Once again, while I was working in my garden late this afternoon, a hairstreak landed on a bush/vine/plant near me, and slowly turned around in circles while rubbing its hindlegs together. For whatever reason, I don't see many hairstreaks in the morning or middle of the day, just mainly in the evening.

At first, I thought this was a faded gray hairstreak, then on second look, I thought it was a faded striped hairstreak. Looking at it again, I now think it's a king's hairstreak - sweetleaf, the host plant for king's hairstreaks, is common in my woods.

Here's a gray hairstreak that nectared on milkweed in my garden -

And here's a gray hairstreak that I photographed in a savannah in Jackson County -

Here's a picture of a striped hairstreak that I recently took -

Today's mystery hairstreak landed on a hops tree/bush in the light of the sun, which was very low in the western sky. This one was frayed -

I think today's hairstreak is a king's hairstreak, because the orange cap over the blue area by the tails is rectangular-shaped, not V-shaped, like those of striped hairstreaks.

Have I identified these butterflies correctly?


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butterflymomok(7a NE OK)


These are the hardest to ID, almost as hard as skippers! Your photo matches the picture in Kaufman's guide. I think you nailed it!

BTW, love all the pictures.


    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 7:02PM
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jrcagle(z7 MD)

I'd go with King's over against Banded because of the size of the orange cap on the hindwing.


    Bookmark   June 17, 2011 at 3:53PM
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