Re: Steens Mountain rim euphilotes question


Neil Bjorklund
 

Stefan—Thanks for sharing your Harney County observations!  I believe E. baueri is the only Euphilotes documented to use E. marifolium as a host plant in Oregon and that, together with previous sightings both east and west of Steens Mountain points to E. baueri.  Also, there are many records in Nevada and California above 6,000 feet, though I haven’t seen any from over 8,000.  The topography of Steens Mountain also probably supports range expansion upslope from the west since it is such a gradual incline, compared to many other mountain ranges.

 

Its good to hear of your Western Pygmy Blue sightings—I haven’t seen one in years!  (But I haven’t been to the Alvord Basin in years either.)

 

There you have my two bits.

 

Neil Björklund

Eugene, Oregon

_______________________

www.butterfliesoforegon.com

 

 

From: <NorWestLeps@groups.io> on behalf of Stefan Schlick <greenfant@...>
Reply-To: <NorWestLeps@groups.io>
Date: Sunday, July 24, 2022 at 7:53 AM
To: <NorWestLeps@groups.io>
Subject: [NorWestLeps] Steens Mountain rim euphilotes question

 

Just back from a trip to Steens Mountain and the Alvord Desert (July 20-23). We found Shasta Blue (Icaricia shasta) at about 8700ft up on Steens Mountain, and many artonis Mormon Friillaries. The wildflowers were spectacular. In the Alvord, we found all the dragonfly species associated with the hot springs, plus Long-nosed Leopard Lizard.

There also were many Euphilotes blues feeding on Steens Mountain Buckwheat (Eriogonum ovalifolium var. rubidum) near or at the rim. What is expected here? What is using this buckwheat as its host plant? Could this be E. glaucon? Or does E. baueri move up the mountain? Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

At dried up Mann Lake, we found several Western Pygmy Blues (Brephidium exilis) feeding on Russian Thistle. This was on the west end as you go down to the old lake shore from the restroom. The expected Melissa's Blue and Ruddy Copper were plentiful as well.

Stefan Schlick
Hillsboro, OR

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