Mournful Duskywing

Subject: Butterfly ID
Location: Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve , California (34.1725, -118.4692 )
July 29, 2013 9:02 pm
I photographed this one at Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve (Van Nuys, California) on March 5, 2013. I’d like to know what it is. Thanks!
Signature: Talila

Mournful Duskywing
Mournful Duskywing

Dear Talila,
We were away from the office between July 30 and August 16 and we did not respond to any identification requests during that time.  We are now trying to respond to a small fraction of the identification requests we received in that time and posting the most interesting submissions.  We quickly recognized your butterfly as a Duskywing Skipper, but we were not certain of the species.  Imagine our surprise when we found your request answered as a male Mournful Duskywing,
Erynnis tristis, on BugGuide.  Unlike BugGuide, since our editorial staff does all the actual posting on our site, we like larger images that we can crop ourselves.  Insects are not isolated from their environments.  Insects are part of the complex web of life that exists in the myriad distinct ecosystems that comprise the microhabitats that can exist in a single acre. This includes plants and other creatures that form food chains and symbiotic relationships.

Many thanks for your answer!
BTW, it wasn’t me who asked about this butterfly at BugGuide. My friend, Yael Orgad, who was hiking with my on that day had asked about it there and had I remembered she did I would have simply asked her …
I’ll be happy to send you the original, uncropped image if you are interested in posting this.
So which one is it, the skipper or the mournful Duskywings?

Hi Talila,
The Mournful Duskywing, your butterfly, is one of the Skippers, a family of Butterflies.

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