Hoary Comma

Polygonia gracilis
True Brushfoots

Appearance: Above, bright orange and brown with black spots and bars mainly on forewing. Ragged trailing margin of wings marked inward by row of indistinct yellow spots. Underside overall gray with inner portions darker with white comma (similar to Nike logo) at the edge of the darker portion on hindwing.

Size: Medium; 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 inches

Habitat: Coniferous or mixed woods often near streams, but appear to wander widely from alpine tundra to the prairie (Opler, 1999).

Season: May through September and later

Larval Foodplant: Willows, quaking aspen, gooseberry and currant leaves

Did You Know…
The generic name, Polygonia, refers to the “many angled” trailing edge of both wings, and the common name, Hoary, refers to the whitish-gray color of the outer portions of the underside of hindwings. Adults overwinter and emerge in spring to lay eggs until June. The new generation appears in July and flies until September, then overwinters as an adult.

Species Gallery (click to enlarge)