Tailed Orange 1/7/22 on same Desert Lavender Tailed Orange

Butterflies of Southern Arizona

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Tailed Orange.
Pyrisitia proterpia.
Whites/Sulphurs (Pieridae) Family.

Identification: Two sexual and two seasonal forms. Upperside orange; tip of forewing squared off. Male with black forewing costa; females with black forewing costa, apex, and outer margin. Winter (dry-season) form with tail-like projections on hindwing; summer (wet-season) form without tails. Wing Span: 1 3/4 - 2 1/4 inches (4.5 - 5.7 cm). Life History: Males patrol for females on flats and in gullies. The dry-season form is non-reproductive until the onset of the rainy season. Flight: August-November in Texas; throughout the year in the tropics. Caterpillar Hosts: In Texas, mesquite (Prosopis) and senna (Cassia) species; Desmodium in the tropics (all in the pea family [Fabaceae]). Adult Food: Nectar from many species of flowers. Habitat: Desert and subtropical open and disturbed areas including scrub, pastures, forest edges. Range: Peru north to Mexico; Greater Antilles; strays to southern Texas, southwest New Mexico, and southeast Arizona; rarely to Nebraska and Kansas.

Santa Catalina Mountains
Sabino Canyon.
Location: On Desert Lavender in creek bed above dam.

Notes: 1/7/22 shows orange dorsal surface of left wing where right hindwing is torn.

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