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Species Memphis pithyusa - Pale-spotted Leafwing - Hodges#4556

Pale-spotted Leafwing - Memphis pithyusa Memphis pithyusa Pale-spotted Leafwing - Memphis pithyusa Pale-spotted Leafwing - Memphis pithyusa Pale-spotted Leafwing - Memphis pithyusa Pale-spotted Leafwing - Memphis pithyusa Pale-spotted Leafwing - Memphis pithyusa
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Papilionoidea (Butterflies and Skippers)
Family Nymphalidae (Brush-footed Butterflies)
Subfamily Charaxinae (Leafwings and relatives)
Tribe Anaeini (Leafwings)
Genus Memphis (Leafwings)
Species pithyusa (Pale-spotted Leafwing - Hodges#4556)
Hodges Number
4556
Other Common Names
Blue Leafwing
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Anaea pithyusa - NABA name
Explanation of Names
Memphis pithyusa (R. Felder, 1869)
Size
wingspan 57-76 mm
Identification
Adult: upperwings usually not visible when resting, dark blue-black with a row of pale spots along the margins. Forewing spots are larger and pale blue, hindwing spots are whiter and smaller. Underwings cryptic, resemble a dead leaf; pale spots just barely visible on hindwing near tails.
Range
s. TX (as a stray) to Bolivia - Map (MPG, BOA)
Habitat
Subtropical forest.
Season
The wet season form flies from November-March; the dry season form flies from May-September; adults fly in southern Texas in March, July, September, and November.
Food
Caterpillars feed on foliage of Cuala (Croton lucidus), also known as Firebush, in family Euphorbiaceae.
Adults feed on animal dung and rotting or overripe fruit.
Remarks
Normally considered a very rare stray to the US, but three individuals were found in one day at Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park on December 4, 2005! Lone individuals were found in the same area January 17 and 25, 2006.
Internet References