New Jersey Butterflies

Henry's Elfin

Callophrys henrici

Identification: Very small—size of thumbnail. Almost never seen with wings open. Below: Inner portions of FW and HW dark brown, outer portions markedly lighter brown. Narrow white marks define the ends of the bands separating light areas from dark. Also, when fresh has violet frosting on outer HW near short tails. Similar hairstreaks: Brown Elfin is uniformly brown (not two-toned) and lacks white marks and frosting. Frosted Elfin has dark spot on HW near tails.

NJ Status and Distribution: Resident. Occurs only from Burlington and Monmouth counties south.

NJ Range Map-Henry's Elfin

Habitat: Open, including disturbed, areas near host plants.

Flight Period: Early April to mid-May. Extreme dates: South Jersey 3/14—5/26.

Larval Food Plants: Mostly American Holly (Ilex opaca), which is a common native tree on sandy soils of the Coastal Plain.

Overwintering Stage: Pupa.

Best Locations: Sandy Hook GNRA, Allaire SP, Forsythe NWR (Brigantine Division), Glassboro WMA, Dennisville RR, Beaver Swamp WMA.

Comments: Additional sites that support this species await discovery by the intrepid naturalist.



Henry's Elfin

Sandy Hook, Monmouth Co., NJ, 4/11/10, on Rubus.