Other Common Names
Chequered Skipper (in Eurasia)
Explanation of Names
The name Arctic Skipper is misleading as it is not found in the Arctic, and is most common in the Boreal and Mixed Deciduous Woodland Zones on the margins of deciduous forests.
Adult: upperside black with squarish orange spots; underside of forewing orange with black spots; underside of hindwing red-orange with cream spots outlined in black
Larva: cream-coloured with faint dorsal stripe and yellowish lateral line above row of black spots
circumboreal: in North America, Alaska and coast to coast across Canada and northern US, south in the west to central California, south in the east to Pennsylvania
Glades and openings in heavily forested woods, moist meadows, and streamsides.
Larva: Grasses, including purple reedgrass (Calamagrostis purpurascens) in California, and bromes (Bromus) in Europe; probably others.
Adults: Nectar from flowers, including Iris in California.
Adults rest with their wings closed, but bask with hindwings open wide and forewings open to about 45 degrees. To find receptive females, males perch on low vegetation and sometimes patrol in openings. Females lay eggs singly on leaves of the host plant. Caterpillars live and feed within nests of silked-together leaves; fully-grown caterpillars overwinter in their nests and then pupate within them in the spring.
Considered high priority conservation in Europe.