Appearance: Above, essentially black with red, orange and/or white spots; eyes brown, usually with luminous antenna clubs. Abdomen usually with white dots. Below, the hindwing has 3 bands of cream or white separated by orange bands.
Size: Small; 1 1/8 to 2 3/16 inches
Habitat: Many open habitats from stream courses to sagebrush hills, canyons and alpine tundra
Season: May to July
Larval Foodplant: Indian paintbrush, penstemons and snowberry
Did You Know…
This species is extremely variable (thus the name) both geographically and within populations. Males hilltop.
Species Gallery (click to enlarge)