Gray Hairstreak Strymon melinus

Very gray. In fact, the gray tone is enough to define it sometimes. That luscious orange spot on the hindwing helps. The White M, the Oak and the Soapberry all have significant blue spots on the hindwing.

This is often the ubiquitous Hairstreak of all summer long and into fall. Competes with the Red-banded for this distinction. I rarely see the Gray in great numbers but it always seems to be around if you walk far enough. And then, of course, it always requires inspection. This pristine individual was taken at Red Slough, Oklahoma.

This species loves my buckeye flowers in April. Circles up and up to return to the flowers and then poses and prances around. Fun to chase.

This is the 2017 version at Round Mountain. And they are variable within this pattern. I think this is a female.  

This staggering anomaly is a Gray Hairstreak that has been improved by a genetic color glitch. I have never seen a Gray anomaly of any kind. Norm Lavers took this shot in northeast Arkansas in Cheryl's fine butterfly attracting gardens.

After this was posted, David Wright, via the Bob Barber connection, stated that he has collected one of these and that it is a known anomaly called heathii. I presume its full name would be Strymon melinus ab. heathii. He collected his in 1986. The picture is very similar. (Thanks to David and Bob.)