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Discover the Acmon Blue butterfly

 

Last updated 3/24/2021 at 12:09pm

Acmon Blue butterfly.

Rosemary is the host plant for the Acmon Blue butterfly.

FALLBROOK – The Acmon Blue, Plebejus acmon, is a California butterfly that spans from the north coasts of Baja California to the Oregon state limit and the upper California mountains. Additionally, it flies from late February to October. These creatures will fly at sea level the entire season; however, they will fly at higher elevations from June to October.

The Acmon Blue is multiple brooded, meaning it has several sets of babies through the year. The butterflies' habitat usually consists of oak woodland, desert chaparrals, rocky mountain slopes, prairie hills, roadsides with sages and alpine terrain above tree lines. In addition, they are known to stay close to their home environment, seeing that they are non-migratory.

This little butterfly encompasses a unique pattern compared to others seen in the area. Both genders, male and female, have a main color throughout the backside of their wing. The main difference between male and female Acmon Blues is the borders of the wings. The males have a very distinct blue outer rim and a dark border, while a female typically has a brown border. The undersides of the wings are spotted and usually have a rust-tinged color, creating a stripe throughout the dots toward the back edge of the wing. Their wingspans range from 3/4 inches to 1 1/8 inches long.

The Acmon Blue larvae host on a variety of plants including various California native plants including: rosemary, buckwheat, lotus, legumes, lupines, rock cress and shadscale.

To find a mate, the male will usually patrol near host plants for females. Then the eggs are laid singly on flowers and leaves of the host plant. The eggs are extremely tiny and often cannot be seen with the naked eye. When the egg hatches, a very small greenish or translucent looking larva emerges and begins to feed. Then the caterpillar pupates into a very small chrysalis and overwinters, and adults emerge often at the beginning of the fly season in February.

To learn more about how you can help promote an increase in the Acmon Blue species, visit http://www.wingsofchange.us or contact the Wings of Change at 760-908-7454. Wings of Change has fresh rosemary, seeds, merchandise and a monthly seminar available to all interested. Purchase tickets for this month's seminar highlighting the Acmon Blue and visit us at the Fallbrook Community Garden.

Submitted by Wings of Change.

 

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