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Hickory Hairstreak Satyrium caryaevorum


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Family: Lycaenidae, Gossamer-wing Butterflies view all from this family

Description The Hickory Hairstreak or Satyrium caryaevorum is a Gossamer-wing Butterfliesof the subfamily Theclinae from North America.

Gossamer-wings are our smallest butterflies. Their wingspans range from 0.5-2.0 inches (1.2-5.1cm). There are about 7,000 species worldwide with about 139 species in North America.

Gossamer-wings include the subfamilies Hairstreaks, Harvesters, Coppers, and Blues. Their flights vary from the fast, erratic Hairstreaks to the slow, bouncy Blues. They like to feed at flowers, and males like to puddle at damp ground. Most male Gossamer-wings locate females by perching, while some males patrol. The turban-shaped eggs are usually laid singly. The larva is oval-shaped with a flattened underside. Some species have honeydew glands that attract ants. Ants like to eat and collect the honeydew made by the caterpillar. In turn, the ants will swarm over anything that might try to harm the larva. The chrysalis is usually formed in leaf litter. Many chrysalises can make faint noises. Scientists believe this noise might ward off predatory ants.

Dimensions 1-1 1/4" (25-32 mm).

Habitat Forests & woodlands, Meadows & fields, Scrub, shrub & brushlands.

Range Great Lakes, Mid-Atlantic, New England, Eastern Canada, Plains, Southeast.