New Jersey Butterflies

Brazilian Skipper

Calpodes ethlius

Identification: Small—FW ~1.0" (NJ's largest grass-skipper). Above: FW and HW dark brown, both with 3 to 5 large and small glassy spots. Below: Reddish-brown (when fresh) to pale brown with 3 or 4 glassy spots across hindwing. Similar skippers: None.

NJ Status and Distribution: Immigrant. A species of the southeast and gulf states. Reported from Cape May County: 8/28/10, 9/19/12-10/7/12, 7/15/14-7/16/14, 8/14/17-11/5/17 and 5/20/18: 16 observations from various locations within the county.

NJ Range Map-Brazilian Skipper

Habitat: Many open areas including disturbed sites. Often visits gardens, where it tends to nectar on large flowers.

Flight Period: Most likely to turn up in late summer and fall.

Larval Food Plants: Many species and varieties of Canna Lily (Canna)

Overwintering Stage: Not reported—but does not overwinter in NJ.

Best Locations: None, but gardens with Canna Lilies in Cape May are probably the best bet during invasion years.

Comments: Reported to be most active at dawn and dusk, which is not to say that it is not active in mornings and afternoons as well. Recent reports from Cape May County include a single sighting in 2010, multiple sightings in 2012, two sightings in 2014, multiple sightings in 2017 and a single sighting in 2018.

Brazilian Skipper

Cape May, Cape May Co., NJ, 7/15/14.

Brazilian Skipper

Clermont, Cape May Co., NJ, 9/27/12.

Brazilian Skipper