Ochlodes agricola

Common Name
The Farmer
Rural Skipper

The newly-coined "common name" Rural Skipper is very unfortunate since there is a skipper "really-named" ruralis - Pyrgus ruralis. And it's in our fauna. The Farmer is intolerant of civilization. It is common to abundant in rocky foothill canyons. At mid-elevation (Washington, Lang) it occurs in dry, rocky sites, often with Goldencup Oak and Coyotemint. It does not venture above 5000'.

The foothill populations are ardent visitors to California Buckeye flowers, and their flight period exactly matches its blooming time. Males perch in sunflecks and vigorous chases are common. At mid-elevation less common and often visiting Coyotemint and Yerba Santa. Mid-elevation specimens are significantly larger than foothill and differ subtly from them in color and pattern. One brood in late spring (late April-early July at Gates; late May-July higher), barely if at all overlapping sympatric O. sylvanoides. Hosts presumably native perennial grasses.