I thought I would draw some butterflies for the extinct animal contest, and then when I looked them up the extinct ones seemed to be dominated by blue species (and subspecies), four of which are shown here.
Lower left corner: Glaucopsyche Xerces (Xerces Blue). Lived on the coastal sand dunes of what is now San Francisco California. Last known sighting, 1941.
Above that: Maculinea teleius burdigalensis, (a subspecies of Scarce Large Blue.) Previous resident of France, catalogued in 1932 and now presumed extinct.
The dark blue moth to the right of the Xerces is Heteropan dolens, last seen in 1929 in Fiji. Extensive spraying and introduction of a parasitic fly (to keep the moth Leuvana Iridescens from destroying coconut crops) resulted in the extinction of both moth species.
The final butterfly is Maculinea arion eutryphron (a subspecies of Large Blue.) Previous resident of the UK, catalogued in 1915. Other subspecies of the Large Blue, once also extinct in the UK, have been reintroduced to the from other regions, but it appears eutryphron is gone forever.
Drawn with colored pencil, these butterflies are laid out like museum specimens and shown about 12 - 16 cm wide (5-7 inches.) This design is part of my extinct butterflies collection.
Blue is my favorite color, and I'm singing the blues to have these lovely butterflies gone from this world, largely by the work of our own human hands.
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