Leona’s little blue butterfly in Klamath County, Oregon, pushed as endangered
by The Oregonian May 20, 2010
The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, Oregon Wild and noted butterfly expert Dr. David V. McCorkle filed a petition last week seeking Endangered Species Act protection for Leona’s little blue butterfly. A single population is found in the Antelope Desert in Klamath County, the only population known in the world. It occupies a specialized niche within a volcanic pumice-and-ash ecosystem on private timberland and a small part of the Winema National Forest. Leona’s little blue is threatened by conifer encroachment, catastrophic and controlled fire, cinder pit mining, insecticide and herbicide use, logging-related activities and livestock grazing. Potential changes in land management that may occur with a pending change in the ownership of the majority of this butterfly’s habitat could further imperil this butterfly.