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Zarucco Duskywing
Erynnis zarucco (Lucas, 1857)

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Diagnosis: This is another large (wingspan: 32 to 38 mm) very dark duskywing, with white forewing flecks. The forewings are narrower and more pointed than those of most other Erynnis, and there is an indistinct pale reddish-brown patch at the end of the cell, basal to the row of white spots. The fringes of the hindwing are brown.

Range: The Zarucco Duskywing flies in the southeastern U.S. and migrates north to Pennsylvania and (once) to Toronto.

Similar Species: Erynnis zarucco could be confused with Juvenal's Duskywing (E. juvenalis) or with Horace's Duskywing (E. horatius). The Funereal Duskywing (E. funeralis) is similar, but can be identified by its white-fringed hindwing. [compare images]

Early Stages: The larvae are pale green with dense white hairs, yellowish lateral stripes, and an orange dot on each segment (Opler and Malikul 1992). In the U.S. they feed on herbaceous and tree Fabaceae.

Abundance: The Zarucco Duskywing is common in the southeastern U.S., less so farther north, except in good migrant years.

Flight Season: Three generations fly in the deep south, two farther north; it regularly wanders north in late summer. However, Shapiro (1971) does not record it from New York.

Remarks: There is a specimen of Erynnis zarucco (T. Irwin, 20 June 1935, Rouge River, Toronto) in the Canadian National Collection of Insects, Arachnids and Nematodes in Ottawa.

© 2002. This material is reproduced with permission from The Butterflies of Canada by Ross A. Layberry, Peter W. Hall, and J. Donald Lafontaine. University of Toronto Press; 1998. Specimen photos courtesy of John T. Fowler.

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