Dakota Skipper

Taxonomic name: Hesperia dacotae

Type: Insect

Conservation Status: Endangered (IUCN)

Wild Range: Tall-grass prairies of Canada and the United States

Diet: Grasses as caterpillars, nectar from prairie flowers as adults

Longevity: 1 year

Size: Wingspan: 2-3 cm

Catepillars construct shelters from silk and grasses. They emerge during the night to gather grasses for food and return to their shelter during the day.

Assiniboine Park Zoo has started a rearing and release program for this local endangered butterfly. Click here to learn more about our Conservation and Research team's grassland butterfly conservation programs.

Photo credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service - Midwest Region