0
info@redzet.eu

Animals » All living things » Butterfly

Small copperChequered skipper
Read description
Chequered skipper, Melnais gāršas resngalvītis (Carterocephalus palaemon), Resngalvīši (Hesperiidae), Tauriņi, Kukaiņi

Chequered skipper

Code: D-046-19
Author: Aivars Gulbis
Photo taken on May 29, 2019
FREE 1000 x 667 px
72 dpi
123 KB
S 1748 x 1165 px
14.8 x 9.87 cm / 300 dpi
MB
M 3000 x 2000 px
25.4 x 16.93 cm / 300 dpi
L 5444 x 3629 px
46.09 x 30.73 cm / 300 dpi
12.5 MB

The chequered skipper (Carterocephalus palaemon), not to be confused with the large chequered skipper, is a small woodland butterfly in the family Hesperiidae. This butterfly can live in grasslands. The upperside of the butterfly is brown with orange spots and on its underside the chequered skipper is orange with brown spots. Chequered skippers are found in the United Kingdom and other European countries, but seen locally in Japan, Canada, and the United States. In North America the chequered skipper is known as the arctic skipper. The size of the chequered skipper ranges from 19 to 32 mm with females being larger. In the 1970s, the chequered skipper went extinct in England due to the new management of the woodlands.

Chequered skipper
 Kingdom:     Animalia
 Phylum:  Arthropoda
 Class:  Insecta
 Order:  Lepidoptera
 Family:  Hesperiidae
 Genus:  Carterocephalus
 Species:  C. palaemon

Description
This butterfly has a wingspan of 29 to 31 mm. The uppersides of chequered skippers are dark brown with orange scales at the base of the wings and golden spots, giving it its English name of chequered skipper. The basic pattern on the underside is similar but the forewings are orange with dark spots, and the hindwings are russet with cream spots rimmed in black. The sexes are similar although females are generally slightly larger.

Distribution
In the UK, the chequered skipper was formerly resident in England and Scotland. Now, the chequered skipper is only found in western Scotland. A programme is under way to reintroduce the species to England. The butterfly has also reached parts of Japan but faces threats there. In the United States the chequered skipper is also known as the arctic skipper and is found in the northern coasts and expands to central Alaska. The chequered skipper can be seen in central California. The chequered skipper has been seen along the coasts of Canada. It is generally considered a woodland butterfly and breeds in and around damp woodland, favoring clearings and woodland paths and seems to have a particular attraction to blue woodland flowers.

British population
The chequered skipper has been extinct in England since 1976 but has stable populations in western Scotland. Attempts to reintroduce the butterfly to England were started in the 1990s. It was previously widespread in the Midlands, with isolated populations as far south as Devon and Hampshire. It is thought that the cessation of coppicing in English woodlands is the main cause of its extinction. It was only discovered in Scotland in 1939 where it was found in grassland on the edges of open broad-leaved woodland. In May 2018, 50 individual chequered skippers are to be reintroduced to Rockingham Forest in Northamptonshire by a Butterfly Conservation led Back from the Brink project.

Habitat
Though the chequered skipper is a woodland butterfly it can also be found in bogs, at the edges of streams, and at grassy forest openings in both the United Kingdom and northern parts of the United States. Chequered skippers can breed in open grasslands in Scotland. In woodland areas the breeding sites happen at the edges of rivers and the bottom of slopes. Though there is a small range in the areas the butterfly can live in, these areas tend to have a smaller range in seasonal and temperature range. The presence of the M. caerulea is really important in determining habitat in Scotland and in England the Bromus is essential. In North America, chequered skippers can be found around forest trails, forest edges, and open grassy areas. Even though the chequered skipper goes by arctic skipper it does not live in Arctic areas.

Home range and territoriality
Males defend territories and intercept passing females from favored perches. This behavior tends to occur when there are concentrations of females, larvae, or food plants. The area where the butterflies place the larvae are in between woodland soils and peats. Chequered skippers set up home close to nectar sources. However, they are careful to not let their territory attract other males. When it is flight season males are known to spread their home farther away from each other.

Food resources
Caterpillars
By laying her eggs in a nitrogen-rich environment, the female increases her offspring's chances of finding food. The amount of nitrogen in the plant can change, however, so the outcome of her initial deposition is determined by various environmental factors. Caterpillars in response change their behavior by eating from different parts of the plant depending on the nitrogen availability. Their preferred diet includes leaves of the plants M. caerulea and Bromus, and the caterpillar's fitness is affected by the nutrients that the plants are growing in. North American caterpillars feed on the purple reedgrass, Calamagrostis purpurascens and other native grasses.

Adults
Seeing that the chequered skipper is an active butterfly and can travel long distances it needs to keep its energy stores filled. Since the chequered skipper lives an active lifestyle it needs to stay in nectar-rich sources. In North America the adults are eating from flower's nectar and they include wild iris and Jacob's ladder.

Parental care
Males defend territories and intercept passing females from favored perches. This behavior tends to occur when there are concentrations of females, larvae, or food plants. The area where the butterflies place the larvae are in between woodland soils and peats. Chequered skippers set up home close to nectar sources. However, they are careful to not let their territory attract other males. When it is flight season males are known to spread their home farther away from each other.

Life history
The life cycle of the chequered skipper starts in early June and ends slightly before the July of the following year. This species of butterfly is single brooded.

Egg
Eggs are singly laid, 20–30 cm above the ground, on the upperside leaf blade of Molinia caerulea or purple moor grass. The eggs are tiny, white, and dome- shaped. The eggs are laid in early June and it takes two to three weeks before it hatches.

Caterpillar
Immediately after the egg hatches, the larva begins to make its own shelter by rolling a leaf blade with silk into the shape of a tube. It leaves the shelter to eat surrounding leaves. The caterpillar molts five times before it is ready to pupate. In between the molting the caterpillar makes a new shelter to accommodate for its growing size. This process is from July to September. By the end of September the caterpillar makes one more shelter using two or three blades of M. caerulea and then hibernates; it comes back out in early spring. The caterpillar is no longer eating by April and begins to pupate, but before it pupates it can wait up to a week.

Pupa
Pupation occurs on the ground by the bases of tussocks. Six weeks later a butterfly comes out of the pupa.

Adult
Around the middle of May the adult has emerged from its pupa. The females and the males mate, then the females lay the eggs on the M. caerulea. Butterflies can be seen before dawn and even after dusk.

Migration
These butterflies fly around spring time when there are lower temperatures and stay in the cooler and unpredictable climate that is Scotland. How far they fly is based on the amount of resources and the adequate habitat that there is.

Enemies
There are no known enemies of the chequered skipper. However, changes in their woodland habit decrease their population size. This decrease in population size is due to the decline of coppicing, which is the cutting of trees close to the base and allowing regrowth to happen. New management of the chequered skippers' habitat also plays a role in its survivability. Chequered skippers' populations decreased in England due to coppicing coming to a halt in the 1950s. By 1976, they were only found in Scotland.

Mating
According to Ravenscroft's study, male chequered skippers are territorial and will determine where mating occurs as they decide optimal places to live. Most males find multiple perches, that they guard to catch any potential mates that are pass through their territory. Males make short and brief round trips near their territory in order to defend it. Researchers deduced that male decision in mating location was not due to richness in resources, but rather due to varying temperature relations. Females generally gravitate to territories based on this as well.
en.wikipedia.org

Chequered skipper

Code: D-046-19
Author: Aivars Gulbis
Photo taken on May 29, 2019
FREE 1000 x 667 px
72 dpi
123 KB
S 1748 x 1165 px
14.8 x 9.87 cm / 300 dpi
MB
M 3000 x 2000 px
25.4 x 16.93 cm / 300 dpi
L 5444 x 3629 px
46.09 x 30.73 cm / 300 dpi
12.5 MB
When choosing to browse our site, you consent to the use of cookies to tailor your experience.
Accept
Priecājamies dalīties ar savām fotogrāfijām!

Turpināt lejuplādēt

Ja vēlaties atbalstīt portālu ar savu brīvprātīgo ziedojumu tā attīstībai:
PayPal:
vai
Bankas pārskaitījums:
Aija Pastare
Konts: LV13HABA0551043352866