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The wingspan measures 1.75–2.25 inches. The upper side of the wings is checkered with tan-orange and black. Both the fore wing and hind wing have a row of sub-marginal black spots and black median lines running across the wings. The underside of the fore wing is orange with a pale orange spot rimmed in black in the fore wing cell. The underside of the hind wing is mottled with browns and grays with a pale post-medial band. There is no silvering.
This butterfly is often found in open, disturbed habitats such as clover and alfalfa fields, pastures, fields, waste areas, roadsides, and mountain meadows. Feed on nectar from: Dogbane, Apocynum sp., Common Milkweed, Asclepias syriaca, Asters, Aster sp.; Bearded Beggarticks, Bidens aristosa; Thistles, Cirsium sp.; Coneflowers, Echinacea sp.; Fleabane, Erigeron sp.; Common Boneset, Eupatorium perfoliatum; Alfalfa, Medicago sativa; Red Clover, Trifolium pratense; Ironweed, Vernonia sp.
At this site, more than a dozen butterflies feeding on Lanceleaf Coreopsis (Coreopsis lanceolata) flowers.