Western Pine Elfin
Callophrys eryphon eryphon

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Immatures     Specimen

26 February 2010






PHOTO DETAILS - ©Nicky Davis
Jack Harry located 2 female Pine Elfins on June 9, 2009
LOCATION: Black Rock Canyon, Tooele County, Utah
GPS 40.01.5706 N, 112.11.5613 W, Elevation 6497 feet

Females  laid 4 eggs 9 June, 10 eggs 12 June, 2009. 
They stopped laying after 9 June so on 12 June we cut fresh Pinyon Pine boughs, put a small sprig in a bouquet in a medicine bottle and used  a plastic container with some chiffon under the plastic lid.  I  used a small lid with a little piece of honey-soaked sponge in it  for the females to use as a nectar source.  I set the container holding the females in the sun on grass in the afternoon  for 1/2 hour, then in the house in the dark 1/2 hour, back out in the sun again and so on.  I also spritzed the pine bough just a bit for added hydration.  The females liked this arrangement and laid 10 eggs.  They only laid on the unopened  pine needle tips that were cut the same morning.

I wanted to have  new, fresh pine boughs when the larvae hatched so I popped the eggs off the pine to store them which resulted in half the eggs not hatching.  At least I believe that's why they all didn't hatch.

After 45 days the pupae were put in a chiffon hammock and suspended  in a container with some water in the bottom to keep them hydrated.  They were then put in the fridge at about 40 degrees.  On  October 30, 2009 they will be transferred to a small fridge with the temperature at about 30 to 35 degrees F.  The goal is to keep them hydrated and at the  temperatures they encounter in the wild under snow.

#1 Pupa was removed from hibernation on 13 February 2010 and emerged  before 7 A.M. 26 February, 2010.


Ova:  6-7 days
Larvae:  23 to 27 days
Pupae:  Hibernate as pupae.
Adults:  Unknown
Broods: one
Hibernation:  Overwinter as pupae

The adult Pine Elfin butterflies often use  the Ceanothus martini, Martin's Ceanothus 
blossoms as a nectar source in Black Rock Canyon.  For photos of this plant, click on  

Ceanothus martini

Pinyon Pine, Pinus edulis

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