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Long Dash Skipper (Polites mystic)

Description: A small to medium sized orange and brown skipper. On the upperside of the forewing males have a long, broad, diagonal black mark (a “long dash”), much longer than similar black marks in other orange Maritime skippers. Females are generally darker above and lack the “long dash”. The underside of the hindwing has a crescent of spots that are parallel to the wing margin. These spots vary in color and intensity from barely visible to bright yellow. In the similar Indian Skipper these spots are not parallel to the wing margin. Wingspan: 23 to 29 mm.

Maritime Distribution: Throughout Maritimes. For Atlas results click here.

Provincial Ranks: NB: S5. NS: S5. PEI: S5.

Flight Period: Early June to late July.

Host Plant: A variety of grasses (Poaceae) including blue grasses (Poa spp.), Quackgrass (Elymus repens), Barnyard Grass (Echinochloa crus-galli), and Timothy (Phleum prantense).

Notes: This is another common skipper species that is typical of open grassy fields, roadsides, and marsh borders.