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 : Mottled Grass-skipper
Anisynta monticolae : Montane Grass-skipper
Anisynta sphenosema : Wedge Grass-skipper
Anisynta tillyardi : Chequered Grass-skipper

Antipodia atralba : Diamond Sand-skipper
Antipodia chaostola : Heath Sand-skipper
Antipodia dactyliota : Western Sand-skipper

Arrhenes dschilus : Scrub Darter
Arrhenes marnas : Swamp Darter

Atkinsia dominula : Two-brand Grass-skipper

Badamia exclamationis : Narrow-winged Awl

Borbo cinnara : Rice Swift
Borbo impar : Yellow Swift

Cephrenes augiades : Orange Palm-dart
Cephrenes trichopepla : Yellow Palm-dart

Chaetocneme beata : Redeye or Eastern Dusk-flat
Chaetocneme critomedia : Banded Dusk-flat
Chaetocneme denitza : Ornate Dusk-flat
Chaetocneme porphyropis : Purple Dusk-flat

Croitana aestiva : Desert Sand-skipper
Croitana arenaria : Inland Sand-skipper
Croitana croites : Yellow Sand-skipper

Dispar compacta : Barred Skipper

Euschemon rafflesia : Regent Skipper

Exometoeca nycteris : Western Flat

Hasora celaenus : Maluku Awl
Hasora chromus : Chrome Awl
Hasora discolora : Green Awl
Hasora hurama : Broad-banded Awl
Hasora khoda : Narrow-banded Awl

Herimosa albovenata : White-veined Sand-skipper

Hesperilla bifasciata : Rare Skipper
Hesperilla chrysotricha : Golden-haired Skipper
Hesperilla crypsargyra : Silver Sedge-Skipper
Hesperilla crypsigramma : Wide-brand Sedge-Skipper
Hesperilla dirphia : Western Brown Skipper
Hesperilla donnysa : Varied Sedge-skipper
Hesperilla flavescens : Yellow Sedge-Skipper
Hesperilla furva : Grey Sedge-skipper
Hesperilla idothea : Flame Sedge-skipper
Hesperilla munionga : Alpine Skipper
Hesperilla malindeva : Two-spotted Sedge-skipper
Hesperilla mastersi : Chequered Sedge-skipper
Hesperilla ornata : Spotted Sedge-skipper
Hesperilla perornata : Montane Sedge-skipper
Hesperilla picta : Painted Sedge-skipper
Hesperilla sarnia : Swift Sedge-skipper
Hesperilla sexguttata : Riverine Sedge-skipper
Hesperilla trimaculata : Large Brown Skipper

Mesodina aeluropis : Montane Iris-skipper
Mesodina cyanophracta : Blue Iris-skipper
Mesodina gracillima : Northern Iris-skipper
Mesodina halyzia : Eastern Iris-skipper
Mesodina hayi : Narrow-winged Iris-skipper

Mimene atropatene : Purple Swift

Muschampia baeticus : Horehound Skipper

Netrocoryne repanda : Bronze Flat

Notocrypta waigensis : Banded Demon

Ocybadistes ardea : Orange Grass-dart
Ocybadistes flavovittatus : Narrow-brand Grass-dart
Ocybadistes hypomeloma : White-margined Grass-dart
Ocybadistes knightorum : Black Grass-dart
Ocybadistes walkeri : Greenish Grass-dart

Parnara amalia : Orange Swift
Parnara bada : Grey Swift

Pasma tasmanica : Two-spotted Grass-skipper

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

Proeidosa polysema : Spinifex Sand-skipper

Rachelia extrusa : Blue-flash Skipper

Sabera caesina : White-clubbed Swift
Sabera dobboe : Yellow-streaked Swift
Sabera fuliginosa : White-fringed Swift

Suniana lascivia : Dark Grass-dart
Suniana sunias : Wide-brand Grass-dart

Tagiades japetus : Pied Flat
Tagiades nestus : Papuan Snow Flat

Taractrocera anisomorpha : Large Yellow Grass-dart
Taractrocera dolon : River-sand Grass-dart
Taractrocera ilia : Rock Grass-dart
Taractrocera ina : No-brand Grass-dart
Taractrocera papyria : White-banded Grass-dart

Telicota ancilla : Greenish Darter
Telicota anisodesma : Southern Large Darter
Telicota augias : Bright-orange Darter
Telicota brachydesma : Small Darter
Telicota colon : Pale-orange Darter
Telicota eurotas : Northern Sedge-darter
Telicota eurychlora : Southern Sedge-darter
Telicota mesoptis : Narrow-brand Darter
Telicota ohara : Northern Large Darter

Timoconia flammeata : Bright Shield-skipper
Timoconia peron : Dingy Shield-skipper
Timoconia tymbophora : Dark Shield-skipper

Toxidia andersoni : Southern Grass-skipper
Toxidia crocea : Narrow-brand Grass-skipper
Toxidia doubledayi : Lilac Grass-skipper
Toxidia inornata : Spotless Grass-skipper
Toxidia melania : Dark Grass-skipper
Toxidia parvula : Banded Grass-skipper
Toxidia rietmanni : White-brand Grass-skipper
Toxidia senta : Spotted Grass-skipper
Toxidia thyrrhus : Dusky Grass-skipper
Toxidia xanthomera : Yellow Grass-skipper
Toxidia xiphiphora : Sword-brand Grass-skipper

Trapezites argenteoornatus : Silver-spotted Ochre
Trapezites atkinsi : Speckled Ochre
Trapezites eliena : Orange Ochre
Trapezites heteromaculatus : Small Orange Skipper
Trapezites iacchoides : Silver-studded Ochre
Trapezites iacchus : Brown Ochre
Trapezites luteus : Yellow Ochre
Trapezites macqueeni : Bronze Ochre
Trapezites maheta : Northern Silver Ochre
Trapezites petalia : Black-ringed Ochre
Trapezites phigalia : Heath Ochre
Trapezites phigaliodes : Montane Ochre
Trapezites praxedes : Southern Silver Ochre
Trapezites sciron : Sciron Ochre
Trapezites symmomus : Splendid Ochre
Trapezites taori : Sandstone Ochre
Trapezites waterhousei : Laterite Ochre

Australian Butterflies
Australian Moths

(updated 26 November 2010, 28 April 2024)