On Aug 13, 2006, Scorpioangel from Gold Hill, OR (Zone 7a) wrote:
Identification: Upperside orange-brown with dark bases and heavy dark markings. Underside light brown to dark maroon with violet tinge. Hindwing submarginal band slightly paler than rest of wing; spots cream-colored, bordered with black, and may or may not be silvered.
Life history: Eggs are laid near host plants. Unfed, first-stage caterpillars hibernate; in the spring they eat leaves.
Flight: One brood from June-September.
Wing span: 2 - 2 1/2 inches (5 - 6.4 cm).
Caterpillar hosts: Violets including Viola adunca, V. glabella, V. nuttallii, V. orbiculata, and V. purpurea.
Adult food: Flower nectar.
Habitat: Moist forest openings and mountain meadows.
Range: British Columbia east to Alberta, south to southern California, Idaho, Montana, and New Mexico.