Status:  former rare resident, now extirpated?

Flights:  not known

Distribution/known sites in Monterey County:   historical records only; no known sites or recent records

Habitats:  ag lands, disturbed areas, sagebrush, mtn. meadows in pines

Host plants: legumes incl. sweet clover, alfalfa, lupine

Adult food: ?

Conservation: none needed for western pops.; Karner blue (east) is endangered


  1.   in MCO, check alfalfa fields with sulphurs, whites

  2.   aka Lycaeides melissa

  3.   no recent records of this species in MCO

  4.   male above warmer blue; fem. mostly brown above, orange band wider, below more iridescent


Melissa blue Plebejus melissa

Life history facts

egg: laid on assorted parts of host plant or on nearby debris

larva: eat young leaves, tended by ants


adult:  males patrol for females near host plants

south dakota roadside