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Santa Barbara Field Guides Butterflies

     Atlides halesus
     Great Purple Hairstreak

male upperside
male underside
female upperside
female underside

Recognition: Upperside is dark and iridescent blue with two long tails on HW; underside is dark with gold coloring near tails; abdomen is blue above and red-orange below.
Flight period: Adults are active from late March to November.
Hostplants: The larvae feed on mistletoes (Phoradendron species) which grow on trees such as oaks, cottonwoods, and sycamores.
Habitat: They are found around forest and desert edges and commonly streamside habitats where mistletoe hostplants are found growing on cottonwoods and sycamores. Males hilltop.
Distribution: Great Purple Hairstreaks are found across the southern U.S., south to Guatemala.
Other: Most specimens in collections are from pupae found at the bases of mistletoe host trees and reared in captivity.

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