These small butterflies can be found in western Montana from May to mid-June in a variety of habitats, including mixed conifer/deciduous woodlands and bogs. Almost any place where acidic soils predominate, and their larval plants, mainly in the Heath Family (Ericaceae), thrive. (The Common Huckleberry is one example.) The olive green to yellow green caterpillars feed on flowers, fruits, and leaves of the host plants. Brown Elfins often fly in the company of others and enjoy sipping nectar, as well as moisture from wet sand and earth. They range across much of North America, but are absent from the Midwest.
Size: Wingspan 19 – 29 mm
Photos by: Kelly Dix on 5/5/22 near Victor, MT