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Butterflies of Mexico, USA & Canada
Common Sootywing
Pholisora catullus  FABRICIUS, 1793
Family - HESPERIIDAE
subfamily - PYRGINAE
Tribe - CARCHARODINI
Pholisora catullus Massachusetts, USA Frank Model
Introduction
The Pyrginae, popularly known as Flats or Spreadwings, are a cosmopolitan subfamily distributed across temperate and tropical habitats throughout the world. In the Americas there are 990 species.
There are only Pholisora species - catullus and mejicanus. Both have sooty black wings patterned with white spots on the outer forewing.
Pholisora catullus is widespread in the USA and southern Canada, and reaches south to Oaxaca in Mexico where its range overlaps with mejicanus.
Habitats
This species is found in a wide range of disturbed habitats wherever its larval foodplants grow. It is found commonly along roadsides, hence the alternative name Roadside Rambler.
Lifecycle
The eggs are laid singly on the leaves of Chenopodium ( Amaranthaceae ). The larva is pale green with a chocolate-brown head. It lives within a shelter constructed by folding a leaf and fastening it with silk, and constructs a new shelter after each moult. The chrysalis is greenish-white and rough textured, and is formed within the final leaf shelter.
Adult behaviour

Both sexes are commonly found basking on bare ground or on low herbage in areas of disturbed and well drained ground. They nectar at a wide range of flowers.

 

 

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