San Diego Management & Monitoring Program


Invertebrate Species
Hermes Copper Adult Surveys 2016

January 1, 2016 - December 31, 2016 completed

Project description

In 2016, researchers conducted butterfly surveys and habitat assessments at small northern populations and at southern sites. They did not detect Hermes copper adults at any of the eight northern sites, although this was consistent with other (larger) sites in the county due to continuing drought conditions. They did detect Hermes copper at some of the southern sites. Habitat assessments resulted in the mapping of 65 spiny redberry patches and 11 single redberry shrubs across the 8 sites. Up to 90 redberry shrubs were recorded in a single patch, but more patches were represented by a relatively low number of shrubs, and most of the redberry patches had at least 60% shrub cover. Additional insight may be gained from a more formal comparison to the habitat measured at Hermes copper sites in southern San Diego County.


Project protocol

Name: Hermes Copper Adult Surveys & Habitat Assessment 2016

Description: Our goal was to record the maximum number of Hermes copper adults present on a single day at each site (maximum count). All surveys were conducted during periods of appropriate weather (sunny or partly sunny, 20 to 35 degrees C, and modest wind speeds) unless stated otherwise. Initial surveys occurred about one time per week and started on 16 April. Sampling occurred two times per week (weather dependent) throughout the Hermes copper flight season. At each site, redberry patches were mapped and in the same areas where we conducted surveys for adult Hermes copper. The abundance and cover of spiny redberry and California buckwheat was recorded, as well as general vegetation composition. The site assessments were designed to be rapid and detect large differences in habitat. Individual redberry shrubs were also recorded but associated habitat data were not collected for single, isolated shrubs. [See report methods for more information]


Project spatial boundary

View spatial map of this project.

Project focus

Project type: Monitoring-Animals


Project data files

Target species: Hermes copper


Implementing entities

Investigator: Douglas Deutschman

Main implementing entity: San Diego State University

Point of contact: Dan Marschalek

SDMMP lead: Kris Preston

Study lead: Dan Marschalek


Files and documents