Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
First (officially) recognized as distinct from H. sosybius and described in 2014.
Explanation of Names
Hermeuptychia intricata Grishin 2014. Type locality: Hale Lake, Brazos Bend State Park, Fort Bend County, Texas.
"The name refers to the difficulty in recognizing this very distinct species and its intricate ventral wing patterns. The name is an adjective." (1)
It should be stated that all identifications of "Intricate Satyr" on BugGuide, without a photograph of the dorsal surface of the forewing in a male or examination of the genitalia, should be considered as somewhat tentative. The genitalia, particularly the pointed shape of the male uncus (as apposed to truncated in sympatric species) are distinctive, but can not be seen in nature photographs. The dorsal surface of the forewing in males is more readily photographed but sometimes difficult to observe. (Click the thumbnail below for comments and an illustration on sexing members of the genus and differentiating males of the complex by the dorsal forewing.)
In H. intricata
, the postmedian line (PML) on the ventral surface of the hindwing is rather straight between the costa and M3 and distinctly bulges somewhat sharply distad around vein M3 (between the third and fourth eyespot from the costa). In H. sosybius
this bulge is either absent or around M2 (third eyespot or higher) and there is typically a large basad bulge around M1 rather than a straight line.(2)
Many individuals that display the typical PML shape can be tentatively identified from this feature alone. However, a minority of individuals are unidentifiable by the PML alone. (Click the thumbnail below for comments and an illustration on identifying individuals in the species complex by PML morphology.)
Additionally on the ventral hindwing, the area near the tornus where the postmedian and submarginal lines join forms a gap below the posterior most eyespot dubbed the Sinuous Band Gap (SBG). The SBG is typically wide and long in H. intricata but can be substantially reduced in some H. sosybius. However, this feature is highly variable in H. sosybius and there is considerable overlap between the species. Despite this, some individuals of H. sosybius exhibit extreme reduction or other variations not normally seen in H. intricata and this can aid in identification of females. (Click the thumbnail below for comments and an illustration on identifying individuals in the species complex by SBG morphology.)
These characters may not be 100% reliable when taken individually, but they appear to work well in combination, at least based on specimens so far documented by dorsal forewings and examination of genitalia. However, the full range of pattern variation seen in H. intricata may not be entirely known yet, so identification by pattern alone must remain a bit tentative until the species is better understood throughout its range. Geographic variations in morphology have already been observed between FL, TX, and SC populations. So caution must be taken to get male dorsal forewing photos when attempting to identify H. intricata at new sites.
se US: e. TX to n. FL to NC - Map (1)
Carolina Satyr (Hermeuptychia sosybius) looks similar to H. intricata, with a similar range. The South Texas Satyr (Hermeuptychia hermybius) looks similar, but is found in south Texas, while neither the Intricate Satyr nor Carolina Satyr are found in the Rio Grande Valley.
An example of the diagnostic uncus of the genitalia in H. intricata: