New Jersey Butterflies

Dun Skipper

Euphyes vestris

Identification: Very small—FW ~0.5". Above: Male FW and HW plain dark brown. Head and thorax often with a golden-olive sheen when fresh. Female similarly dark, but FW usually with two very small, pale, central spots and a two-spot "bracelet." Below: Both wings plain dark brown. Female sometimes has a faint postmedian spotband on the HW. Similar skippers: Little Glassywing has prominent glassy spots in FW above, a band of tiny spots in HW below; male lacks golden-olive head and thorax; both sexes have white at base of antennal club. Northern Broken-Dash male FW above has tawny leading edge with 2-part stigma; female has prominent tawny marks in FW above. Both sexes have postmedian band on HW below in shape of a "3".

NJ Status and Distribution: Resident. Widespread and common to abundant throughout the state.

NJ Range Map-Dun Skipper

Habitat: Damp to wet marshes, meadows, fields, roadsides. Readily attracted to garden flowers.

Flight Period: In North Jersey, one or two broods from late May through September, peaking in July. Extreme dates: 5/25-10/9. In South Jersey, two broods, peaking mid-May to early July and again late August to late September. Extreme dates: 5/19—10/18.

Larval Food Plants: A wide variety of sedges (Carex, Cyperus, and Scirpus)

Overwintering Stage: 3rd-Instar larva.

Best Locations: Flatbrookville, Camp Olympia, Allaire SP, Great Swamp NWR, Wildcat Ridge WMA, Thundergut Pond WMA.

Comments: Dun Skipper, Little Glassywing, and Northern Broken-Dash are called the "3 witches"—3 small, dark, difficult-to-separate skippers that fly at the same time in similar habitats.



Dun Skipper

Male, Vernon Twp., Sussex Co., NJ, 6/27/10.


Dun Skipper

Female, Sparta Mt. WMA, Sussex Co., NJ, 7/16/04.


Dun Skipper

Male, Crater Lake Rd., Sussex Co., NJ, 7/9/08, on Birds Foot Trefoil.


Dun Skipper

Female, Stillwater Twp., Sussex Co., NJ, 7/21/12, on Purple Coneflower.