Euphydryas editha

Edith's Checkerspot: Sherman Pass population

The population of Edith's Checkerspots along Sherman Pass - such as this one from Alder Creek at 6800' - doesn't fit neatly into the named subspecies from the general area. Ken Davenport wrote that they may be a blend of rubicunda, augustina, and/or aurilacus; see the discussion in his update to the 1973 Emmel and Emmel book. As someone familiar with augustina from the Big Bear area, I can say that to my eye this Alder Creek individual was more red than the orange-ish augustina I'm used to seeing, which is a rubicunda trait. They don't seem to be common at all, and without more experience with them I'm satisfied considering them to be part of a blend zone.

Euphydryas editha rubicunda
A fresh female Euphydryas editha from Alder Creek at the Sherman Pass Road. May 16, 2014.

©Dennis Walker