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Butterflies - The Meadow-browns Or Satyrs Continued

( Originally Published 1917 )

The Arctic Satyr

Oeneis norna jutta

This is another butterfly of decided interest because of its geographical distribution. It is normally an inhabitant of the Far North, extending around the North Pole over parts of three continents. Apparently, the only place in the United States where it occurs is a bog a little north of Bangor, Maine. This locality is called the Orono. Stillwater bog and is the only place where collectors have been able to find this species.

An even more local insect is another of these mountain butterflies found by H. H. Newcomb on Mount Katandin, Maine. So far as known this species is confined to the higher portion of this mountain and so is even more distinctly localized than the White Mountain butterfly. It is called the Katandin butterfly (Oeneis norma katahdin).

The Little Wood Satyr

Cissia eurytus

This elfin creature has well been named the Little Wood Satyr, although under our modern conditions it is often found in fields and along hedgeroads rather than in the woods. It has, to a marked degree, the delicacy of structure of its allies and its small size serves to emphasize this appearance. It has also a rather general distribution west to the Mississippi Valley, extending from the corner of Dakota, south through Nebraska, Kansas, and central Texas, and north to Wisconsin, Michigan, and New England. It occupies the whole of the United States east and south of the lines thus indicated.

The life-history of this species is very similar to the Common Grayling. The butterflies appear in early summer, deposit their eggs upon grasses, and the resulting larvae feed upon the grasses and grow slowly through the weeks of summer. They become nearly full grown by autumn and hibernate in this condition in such shelter as they can find at the soil surface. The following spring they come forth, probably feeding for a short time, and change to chrysalids in time to emerge as butterflies in May and early June. Practically all observers emphasize the fact that the butterflies are abundant only late in spring or early in summer, generally disappearing before the middle of July. There is thus but one brood a year.

Other Meadow-browns

The Gemmed Brown (Neonympha gemma) is a small southern species remarkable for the plainness of its gray-brown wings which are marked on the upper surface only with two or three dark spots on the middle margin of each hind wing. There are two broods a year.

The Georgia Satyr (Neonympha phocion) is another small southern form, remarkable for the four elongated eye-spots on the lower surface of each hind wing. The shape of these spots distinguishes it at once from the Carolina Satyr (Cissia sosybius) in which the eye spots are rounded.

Synopsis of Meadow-browns

Pearly Eye (Enodia portlandia or Debis portlandia). Expanse 2 1/4 inches. Eyes hairy. Outer margin of hind wings projecting in a noticeable angle. Brown with many distinct eye-spots on both surfaces of wings.

Eyed Brown (Satyrodes canthus or Neonympha canthus). Expanse 2 inches. Eyes hairy. Margin of hind wings rounded, without an angle. Both surfaces of wings pale brown with four distinct blackish eye-spots on each front wing near the margin. Five or six such spots on each hind wing.

Common Wood nymph or Grayling (Cercyonis alope). Expanse 2 inches. Eyes not hairy. Eye spots on front wings, but not on upper surface of hind wings. The chief geographical races of this abundant species are indicated below, although in regions where the forms overlap many intermediate hybrids occur.

Blue-eyed Grayling (Cercyonis alope alope). A large yellowish-brown blotch near outer margin of each front wing, above and below, with two distinct eye-spots in middle spaces of the blotch. A southern race extending north to central New Hampshire, Michigan, and Wisconsin.

Dull eyed Grayling (Cercyonis alope nephele). The yellowish brown blotch obsolete or nearly so, but eye-spots present. A northern race extending southward only to central New Hampshire, Michigan, and Wisconsin.

Maritime Grayling (Cercyonis alope maritima). Similar to the type form, but with the yellowish blotch tinged with reddish. A race found only near the seacoast.

Southern Wood-nymph (Cercyonis pegala). Expanse 3 inches. Eyes not hairy. General color brown with an orange-yellow blotch near outer margin of each front wing above and below with one eye-spot in middle space of the blotch on the male, and two on the female.

Little Wood satyr (Cissia eurytus or Neonympha eurytus). Expanse 1 1/2 inches. Eyes not hairy. General color fawn-brown with two eye-spots on upper surface of each front wing and several on each hind wing.

Gemmed Brown (Neonympha gemma). Expanse 1 1/4 inches. Eyes not hairy. General color mouse-brown with no markings on upper wing surface except a rather indistinct pair or more of spots next the margin of the middle of each hind wing. Under surface indistinctly striped with rusty lines and a few brown and silvery spots on the hind wings directly beneath the spots on the upper surfaces. Occurs in Southern states.

Georgia Satyr (Neonympha phocion). Expanse 1 1/4 inches. Distinguished from the related species by the four distinct eye-spots on lower surface of each hind wing, these spots being transversely elongated rather than round. Occurs in Southern states.

Carolina Satyr (Cissia sosybius). Expanse It inches. Distinguished by the row of round eye-spots near outer margins of lower wing surface. Occurs in Southern states.

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