Long-tailed Skipper

Urbanus proteus

The Long-tailed Skipper is a spread-winged skipper butterfly found throughout tropical and subtropical South America, south to Argentina and north into the southern part of the United States of America. It cannot live in areas with prolonged frost. It is a showy butterfly, with wings of light brown tinted with iridescent blue, and two long tails extending from the hindwings. The robust body is light blue dorsally. It has a large head, prominent eyes, and a wingspan between 4.5 and 6 centimeters.
Long-tailed Skipper Larva (Urbanus proteus) in a Leaf Shelter This Pointed-leaved Tick-Trefoil (Hylodesmum glutinosum) leaf was folded together and "sealed" with fine strands of silk. Inside there was a surprise! A Long-Tailed Skipper Larva. It wasn't very happy to see me and "puked" out some green liquid! :o *Note the bubbly green stuff near the larva's head and the puddle of dark green stuff at the top of the photo.

https://www.jungledragon.com/image/84514/long-tailed_skipper_larva_urbanus_proteus_leaf_shelter.html Geotagged,Long-tailed Skipper,Summer,United States,Urbanus proteus


It lays white or yellow eggs, singly or in small clusters, which hatch into a caterpillar with a yellowish body and large, dark head. After two to three weeks, the caterpillar forms a pupa. Its pupa is contained in a rolled leaf and covered in fine bluish hairs. The pupa stage may last from one to three weeks, after which the adult emerges.

The caterpillar of this skipper is a common pest of crops, especially beans, in the southern United States. For this reason, it is sometimes called the bean leafroller in that area. The caterpillars are also known to attack ornamental plants in the legume family such as wisteria and butterfly pea. The caterpillars feed on leaves and then roll the leaves around themselves, lining the cavity with silk, to pupate. The adults feed on nectar from flowers.


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SpeciesU. proteus