HESPERIIDAE in Australia
Darters and Skippers
Don Herbison-Evans,
Stella Crossley







The scientific name for this family was possibly named after Hesperis, the Ancient Greek name for Venus the Evening Star, or perhaps more likely: the Hesperides, the nymphs who were daughters of Atlas and Hesperis, who were the guardians of the golden apples (three of which were stolen by Hercules as one of the Labours of Hercules), in Ancient Greek legend.

The common names of the subfamilies are derived from the adults not the Caterpillars, so "Skipper" and "Darter" describe the characteristic way in which these butterflies flit from flower to flower when feeding.

The 124 named Australian species of HESPERIIDAE are:

Allora doleschallii : Peacock Awl
Allora major : Greater Peacock Awl

Anisynta cynone : Cynone Skipper
Anisynta dominula : Dominula Skipper
Anisynta monticolae : Mountain Skipper
Anisynta sphenosema : Wedge Skipper
Anisynta tillyardi : Tillyard's Skipper

Antipodia atralba
Antipodia chaostola : Heath Sand Skipper
Antipodia dactyliota

Arrhenes dschilus : Iris Skipper
Arrhenes marnas : Affinis Skipper

Badamia exclamationis : Brown Awl

Borbo cinnara : Rice Swift
Borbo impar : Yellow Swift

Carcharodus baeticus : Horehound Skipper

Cephrenes augiades : Orange Palm Dart
Cephrenes trichopepla : Yellow Palm Dart

Chaetocneme beata : Common Redeye
Chaetocneme critomedia : Banded Redeye
Chaetocneme denitza : Rare Redeye
Chaetocneme porphyropis : Purple Redeye

Croitana aestiva : Desert Skipper
Croitana arenaria : Inland Grass Skipper
Croitana croites : Croites Skipper

Dispar compacta : Dispar Skipper

Euschemon rafflesia : Regent Skipper

Exometoeca nycteris : Western Flat

Hasora celaenus
Hasora chromus : Common Banded Awl
Hasora discolor : Green Awl
Hasora hurama : Broad Banded Awl
Hasora khoda : Large Banded Awl

Herimosa albovenata : White Veined Skipper

Hesperilla bifasciata : Rare Skipper
Hesperilla chrysotricha : Chrysotricha Skipper
Hesperilla crypsargyra : Silvered Skipper
Hesperilla crypsigramma : Small Dingy Skipper
Hesperilla donnysa : Donnysa Skipper
Hesperilla flavescens : Altona Skipper
Hesperilla furva
Hesperilla idothea : Flame Skipper
Hesperilla malindeva : Two-spotted Sedge Skipper
Hesperilla mastersi : Masters' Skipper
Hesperilla ornata : Spotted Skipper
Hesperilla picta : Painted Skipper
Hesperilla sarnia : Swift Sedge Skipper
Hesperilla sexguttata : Six Spot Skipper

Mesodina aeluropis : Aeluropis Skipper
Mesodina cyanophracta : Blue Iris Skipper
Mesodina gracillima : Northern Iris Skipper
Mesodina halyzia : Halyzia Skipper
Mesodina hayi : Small Iris Skipper

Mimene atropatene

Motasingha dirphia : Dirphia Skipper
Motasingha trimaculata : Three Spot Skipper

Neohesperilla crocea : Crocea Skipper
Neohesperilla senta : Senta Skipper
Neohesperilla xanthomera : Xanthomera Skipper
Neohesperilla xiphiphora : Xiphiphora Skipper

Netrocoryne repanda : Eastern Flat

Notocrypta waigensis : Banded Demon

Ocybadistes ardea : Dark Orange Dart
Ocybadistes flavovittata : Common Dart
Ocybadistes hypomeloma : Pale Orange Dart
Ocybadistes knightorum
Ocybadistes walkeri : Yellow Banded Dart

Oriens augustula : August Dart

Oreisplanus munionga : Alpine Skipper
Oreisplanus perornata : Mountain Spotted Skipper

Parnara amalia : Hyaline Swift
Parnara bada : Straight Swift

Pasma tasmanicus : Tasmanica Skipper

Pelopidas agna : Common Swift
Pelopidas lyelli : Lyell's Swift

Proeidosa polysema : Polysema Skipper

  • Pseudoborbo bevani : Bevan's Swift

  • Rachelia extrusus

    Sabera caesina : Black & White Swift
    Sabera dobboe : Miskin's Swift
    Sabera fuliginosa : White Fringed Swift

    Signeta flammeata : Bright Shield Skipper
    Signeta tymbophora : Dingy Shield Skipper

    Suniana lascivia : Dingy Dart
    Suniana sunias : Orange Dart

    Tagiades japetus : Black & White Flat

  • Tagiades nestus

    Taractrocera anisomorpha : Orange Grass Dart
    Taractrocera dolon : Dingy Grass Dart
    Taractrocera ilia : Northern Grass Dart
    Taractrocera ina : Ina Grass Dart
    Taractrocera papyria : White Grass Dart

    Telicota ancilla : Greenish Darter
    Telicota anisodesma : Large Darter
    Telicota augias : Krefft's Darter
    Telicota brachydesma : Small Darter
    Telicota colon : Pale Grass Dart
    Telicota eurotas : Dingy Darter
    Telicota eurychlora : Southern Darter
    Telicota mesoptis : Lower's Darter
    Telicota ohara : Dark Darter

    Toxidia andersoni : Anderson's Skipper
    Toxidia doubledayi : Doubleday's Skipper
    Toxidia inornatus : Inornata Skipper
    Toxidia melania : Black Skipper
    Toxidia parvulus : Parvula Skipper
    Toxidia peron : Large Dingy Skipper
    Toxidia rietmanni : White Brand Skipper
    Toxidia thyrrhus : Thyrrus Skipper

    Trapezites argenteoornatus : Silver Spotted Skipper
    Trapezites eliena : Eliena Skipper
    Trapezites heteromacula : Orange White-spot Skipper
    Trapezites iacchoides : Iacchoides Skipper
    Trapezites iacchus : Iacchus Skipper
    Trapezites lutea : Rare White-spot Skipper
    Trapezites macqueeni : MacQueen's Skipper
    Trapezites maheta : Maheta Skipper
    Trapezites petalia : Common White-spot Skipper
    Trapezites phigalia : Phigalia Skipper
    Trapezites phigaliodes : Phigalioides Skipper
    Trapezites praxedes : Praxedes Skipper
    Trapezites sciron : Sciron Skipper
    Trapezites symmomus : Symmomus Skipper
    Trapezites taori : Sandstone Ochre
    Trapezites waterhousei

    Australian Butterflies
    Australian Moths

    (updated 26 November 2010, 2 March 2017)