2016 Update of PA Butterfly Atlas

[still image -- hyperlinks from the map are disabled]

[still image — hyperlinks from the map are disabled]

Once again David Wright has updated his fine Atlas of Pennsylvania Butterflies, the 15th such edition since the project begain in 1995.  Drawing a host of sources — historical and contemporary, listed at the back of the report, and updated from 2015 sightings — the distribution maps for each species in the PA butterfly fauna offer readers a very compact and approachable way to easily see where a given butterfly occurs (or has occurred) in PA.  Along the way it offers an object lesson biogeography, as having the distribution data presented this way — colored in for counties where there are verified records — clearly shows the habitat barriers for many of the state’s species.

Readers should remember, however, that historic sightings don’t necessarily indicate the continuing presence of species.  The map for Regal Fritillary, for example, shows more than half of PA counties with sightings; this is a sad reminder that habitat for this iconic prairie species has practically vanished in modern times.

Introducing the report, David writes on PALepsOdes:

>>Attached is the latest edition of the Atlas of Pennsylvania Butterflies, including new county records documented in 2015. Beginning with the inception of the atlas in 1995, we have logged 2256 new county records. This averages to a rate of slightly more than 100 per year. In the last two decades many gaps in species’ ranges have been filled-in. Yet there are still challenges and reasons for continued field work, such as monitoring range shifts and species status within previously known ranges.


PS – I have a handful of printed hard copies of the atlas. Send me an email, if you wish to receive one in the mail.<<  [Wripenn AT aol /DOT/com]

Click on the link in the first paragraph or on ATLAS to view the Atlas.





This entry was posted in checklist, general butterfly news, sightings, state butterflies. Bookmark the permalink.

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