Thursday, June 9, 2011

acmon blue ~ 06/09/11 ~ Pinnacles


female acmon blue
Plebejus acmon
for more information click here and here

Look at the green sheen on the abdomen, the tuft of white hair around the thorax, the striped antennae, and the slightly used appearance of the wings, from missing scales to a nip in the hindwing. I wonder why lepidopteran scales wear off so easily. Life never ceases to amaze me with all its details, often too small to notice with the unaided eye or best observed through the course of time. Sigh... I spent much longer on this post than I intended. The reason is there seems to be considerable debate over classifying this butterfly. I read and looked and still cannot tell the difference between acmon blue and lupine blue (Plebejus lupini), if indeed there is a difference since some folks believe they're the same species. For more information about P. lupini, click here and here. Nature knows what it's doing; us humans don't really know. Do we?

2 comments:

Jennifer and Steve said...

Nice. We saw a number of these when we lived in Santa Fe. Lovely creatures!

Katie (Nature ID) said...

J&S, the little "blue" butterflies are my favorites, partly because I can actually approach them to take a picture.