Utah Lepidopterists' Society

Founded 6 Nov 1976

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Utah Habitats for Butterflies and Moths

Basin and Range Province--Cedar Fort Spring Creek



1. Wasatch Canyons

2. Wasatch Valley Riparian

3. Wasatch Valley Meadows

4. Wasatch Hilltops

5. Arctic Alpine

6. Basin and Range Province

7. Canyon Country

8. Montane

9. Utah's Dixie


As was discussed in the habitat section for Basin and Range Province, there are several different taxa of butterflies found at Spring Creek (west of Cedar Fort) as contrasted to American Fork Canyon which is just 20.8 miles to the east.  The differing mountain ranges of these two canyons has everything to do with why this is so.

From Spring Creek (west of Cedar Fort,) you can see the snow-packed Wasatch Range 21 miles to the east in the distance.  The geological, floral and faunal differences of these two mountain ranges are not subtle.

The differences in similar butterflies flying at Spring Creek is especially evident with the family Pieridae (Whites, Sulphurs, and Orange-tips.)  Instead of finding typical Wasatch Front varieties Utah Stella Orangetip (Anthocharis stella browningi) and the Spring White (Pieris sisymbri sisymbri,) at Spring Creek, you will find the Southwestern Orangetip (Anthocharis sara thoosa) as well as the Dark-Veined Spring White (Pieris sisymbri nigravenosa.

A few weeks later, instead of finding large numbers of the Large Marble (Euchloe ausonides coloradensis) as you would in the Wasatch Front, you will find the Desert Marble (Euchloe hyantis lotta) flying amongst the Juniper trees seeking out its principle hostplant Streptanthus cordatus.

Another Wasatch Front taxon is the Variable Checkerspot, (Euphydryas anicia maria.)  At Spring Creek, you will find another subspecies common to the Basin and Range Province which is Euphydryas anicia wheeleri.  A last instar larva of wheeleri was found in the Spring of 2004 feeding on Indian Paintbrush, (Castilleja chromosa.)


Butterfly Species Checklist For Cedar Fort Spring Creek:


Swallowtails (Family Papilionidae)       

Anise Swallowtail (Papilio zelicaon nitra)
          Two-tailed Swallowtail (Papilio multicaudata grandiosus)

Brush-footed Butterflies (Family Nymphalidae)

Field Crescent (Phyciodes pulchella camillus)
Thistle Crescent (Phyciodes mylitta mylitta)
          Variable Checkerspot (Euphydryas anicia wheeleri)           
Satyr Comma (Polygonia satyrus satyrus)
California Tortoiseshell (Nymphalis californica)
Mourning Cloak (Nymphalis antiopa)
Milbert's Tortoiseshell (Nymphalis milberti furcillata)
Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui)
West Coast Lady (Vanessa carye annabella)
Red Admiral (Vanessa atalanta rubria)
Weidemeyer's Admiral (Limenitis weidemeyeri latifascia)
Arizona Sister (Adelpha bredowi eulalia)

Gossamer-wing Butterflies (Family Lycaenidae)

Great Purple Hairstreak (Atlides halesus estesi)
Desert Elfin (Incisalia fotis fotis)
Juniper Hairstreak (Mitoura siva chalcosiva)
Gray Hairstreak (Strymon melinus franki)
Western Pygmy-Blue (Brephidium exile)
Spalding's Dotted-Blue (Euphilotes spaldingi)
Silvery Blue (Glaucopsyche lygdamus oro)
Melissa Blue (Plebejus melissa melissa)

Milkweed Butterflies (Family Danaidae)

          Monarch (Danaus plexippus)

Satyrs (Family Satyridae)

           Great Basin Wood Nymph (Cercyonis sthenele paulus)

Skippers (Family Hesperiidae)

Common Checkered-Skipper (Pyrgus communis)
Juba Skipper (Hesperia juba)

Whites and Sulphurs (Family Pieridae)

Becker's White (Pieris beckeri)
          Dark-Veined Spring White (Pieris sisymbri nigravenosa)
Checkered White (Pieris protodice)
Cabbage White (Pieris rapae)
Large Marble (Euchloe ausonides coloradensis)
Desert Marble (Euchloe hyantis lotta)
Southwestern Orangetip (Anthocharis sara thoosa)
Yellow Sulphur (Colias philodice eriphyle)
Orange Sulphur (Colias eurytheme)

All images of Limenitis weidemeyeri on the ULS Info Bar courtesy Jay Cossey

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