Agave cupreata is found in the Mexican states of Michoacan and Guerrero at elevations of 1,200-1,800 meters. It can, however, be found elsewhere but not typically in as much abundance. The age of maturity for Agave cupreata varies, but it can take up to 15 years before the plant is ready for harvest. Depending on the region, some communities that make mezcal with Agave cupreata refer to the plant as Maguey papalote. The name papalote, however, is also used in some other regions (like parts of Puebla, for example) for Agave potatorum, which is very similar in shape and physical structure to cupreata, but much smaller. Some of these mezcals that use the term papalote for Agave potatorum will clarify that it is papalote potatorum.