Twin Cities Ecological Services Field Office

Midwest Region


Twin Cities Field Office

4101 American Boulevard East
Bloomington, MN 55425
Phone: 612-725-3548
Fax: 612-725-3609
TTY: 1-800-877-8339 (Federal Relay)




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Karner Blue butterfly (Lycaeides melissa samuelis)


Karner Blue Butterfly

Male Karner blue butterfly.

Photo by Paul Labus: Indiana TNC

The Karner blue butterfly, an endangered species, is a small butterfly that lives in oak savannas and pine barren ecosystems from eastern Minnesota and eastward to the Atlantic seaboard. Historically, it was found in a continuous band throughout its range but today is found in portions of New Hampshire, New York, Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, Indiana, and Minnesota. The wild blue lupine (Lupinus perennis) is the only food plant for the Karner caterpillar. But the range of Karners and lupine do not completely overlap. Instead, Karners are found along the northern band of lupine range. In Minnesota, Karner blues remain only at Whitewater State Park.


USFWS Karner Blue photos on Flickr


Karner Blue Butterfly Home


Fact Sheet: Karner Blue Butterfly


Species Overview linked to the National USFWS Endangered Species website




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Last updated: April 15, 2015