Western Pygmy Blue Butterfly
The butterfly members of this Order of insects include the popular and usually colorful species. Butterfly groups include monarchs, satyrs, dagerwings, leaf-wings, owls, buckeyes, admirals, checkerspots, crecents, fritillaries, heliconids, riodinids, blues, hairstreaks, coppers, whites, orange-tips, sulphurs and swallowtails.
Sometimes no bigger that 3/8″ the Western Pygmy Blue is the smallest butterfly in the western United States. Although fairly common, many people probably walk right by these delicate blues because of their tiny size and dainty, low to the ground flight. This specimen was found in the salt march area of San Francisco. Adults work their way north during the Summer months. Blue-green eggs hatch into light green caterpillars that feed on pickleweed, saltbush and pigweed. The inner portions of the top wing surfaces are metallic blue. This low-altitude butterfly was introduced to Hawaii around 1979.