Poanes taxiles

Photo Life History: Poanes taxiles

Habitat:  Mountain Canyons

Host Plants:  Bromus inermus; Phalaris arundinacea

Suitable Lab Host Plants: Sorghum halepense (Most wide-bladed weedy grasses work fine to feed this larva in the lab.)  

Caring for Live Female Butterflies:  Nectaring techniques

Methods of Female Oviposition:  Portable Cages; Open Screen Cages.  (Getting eggs out of females has proven to be the most effective way of rearing this skipper.)

How to Find Eggs:  Look on grass blades.  Finding eggs can be difficult if host grasses are too common.

How to Hatch Eggs:  Consolidate eggs into one container

How to Find Caterpillars in the Field: Skipper Nests (Scroll down to find skipper nests for the taxiles skipper.)

Caterpillar setups:  Open terrariums; Open Bucket.  Click here to watch a video demonstrating how to place a hatchling first instar Poanes caterpillar on wide bladed grasses.

Overwintering Stage: Fourth instar out of six instars.

Overwintering Strategies: 

Larva to Pupa:  

Emergence:  Emergence Container

Number of Broods per Year:  1 to 3; depending upon location.

Avoiding Diapause Techniques:  Provide larvae healthy host plant and possibly expose larvae to 24 hours of light.  Some larvae like to diapause at fourth instar; however, if you keep providing healthy host to the larva in the lab, they bypass diapause and continue through six instars to pupate and emerge same year.

Disease Prevention: 

Field Notes:  Finding late instar larval nests has been somewhat challenging in Northern Utah; but was somewhat easier in Garden Canyon, Cochise County, Arizona.  I have had the best luck getting eggs out of females using portable cages.