North American Ecology (US and Canada)
occurs (regularly, as a native taxon) in multiple nations
Regularity: Regularly occurring
Type of Residency: Year-round
Global Range: (>2,500,000 square km (greater than 1,000,000 square miles)) Resident from southern California to Louisiana. Emigrates north as far as Ontario. Also occurs south to Central America. May appear to be permanent in areas in which it is actually a very regular migrant.
Comments: Open oak woods, meadows in pine forest, mountain canyons, desert scrub, dry flats. Larval hosts are in genus Cassia.
Non-Migrant: No. All populations of this species make significant seasonal migrations.
Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make local extended movements (generally less than 200 km) at particular times of the year (e.g., to breeding or wintering grounds, to hibernation sites).
Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make annual migrations of over 200 km.
Number of Occurrences
Note: For many non-migratory species, occurrences are roughly equivalent to populations.
Estimated Number of Occurrences: 81 to >300
10,000 to >1,000,000 individuals
Life History and Behavior
Molecular Biology and Genetics
Barcode data: Eurema mexicana
Below is the sequence of the barcode region Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI or COX1) from a member of the species.
See the BOLD taxonomy browser for more complete information about this specimen.
Other sequences that do not yet meet barcode criteria may also be available.
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Download FASTA File
Statistics of barcoding coverage: Eurema mexicana
Public Records: 1
Specimens with Barcodes: 19
Species With Barcodes: 1
National NatureServe Conservation Status
Rounded National Status Rank: N3 - Vulnerable
NatureServe Conservation Status
Rounded Global Status Rank: G5 - Secure
Reasons: Resident in arid southwest U.S.; common in Mexico and Central America.
Degree of Threat: D : Unthreatened throughout its range, communities may be threatened in minor portions of the range or degree of variation falls within natural variation
Global Protection: Unknown whether any occurrences are appropriately protected and managed
The Mexican Yellow (Eurema mexicana, sometimes called the Wolf-Face Sulphur) is a North and South American butterfly in the family Pieridae. It occurs mainly in Mexico but occasionally is found in central and southwestern USA and rarely in Canada.
The upper side of the wings is pale yellow with a black fore wing submarginal border outlining a "dog" or "wolf-face" pattern. The hind wing has a small outer margin black border. The male has a bright yellow patch on the leading edge of the hind wing. The underside of the wings is pale yellow in summer individuals and pale yellow with reddish markings or all reddish-pink in winter individuals. The hind wing is sharply pointed. The wingspan measures 1¼ to 2¼ inches or 33-44 mm.
Boisduval's Yellow is smaller and brighter yellow, the male has a weaker "dog face" pattern, the female has reduced black on the upper side, and the hind wing is less sharply pointed.
The Salome Yellow is brighter yellow, has more limited black on the upper side, and the underside of the hind wing has a round reddish spot near the trailing edge.
Here is a list of host plants used by the Mexican Yellow:
- New Mexican Locust, Robinia neomexicana
- Fern Acacia, Acacia angustissima
- Prairie Acacia, Acacia angustissima var. hirta
- Cassia species
- Diphysa robinoides.
- Gerardo Lamas (edited by) (2004). Atlas of Neotropical Lepidoptera. Checklist: Part4A. Hesperioidea-Papilionoidea. Scientific Publishers, Inc., Gainesville, FL. ISBN 0-945417-28-4
- James A. Scott (1986). The Butterflies of North America. Stanford University Press, Stanford, CA. ISBN 0-8047-2013-4
- Mexican Yellow, Butterflies of Canada
- Jim P. Brock and Kenn Kaufman (2003). Butterflies of North America. Houghton Mifflin, New York, NY. ISBN 0-618-15312-8
- Bob Stewart, Priscilla Brodkin and Hank Brodkin (2001). Butterflies of Arizona. West Coast Lady Press. ISBN 0-9663072-1-6
- Thomas J. Allen, Jim P. Brock and Jeffrey Glassberg (2005). Caterpillars in the Field and Garden. Oxford University Press, New York, NY. ISBN 978-0-19-514987-6
- Eurema, funet.fi
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