Family lycaenidae subfamily theclinae




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FAMILY LYCAENIDAE

SUBFAMILY THECLINAE

Swainson, 1830

TRIBE THECLINI

Swainson, 1830
SUBTRIBE OXYLIDINA

Eliot, 1973

A small subtribe of three genera (14 species), confined to the Afrotropical Region. The thorax is less robust than in other subtribes of theclines, consequently the flight is relatively weak. The forewings are strongly rounded. The hindwing has three tails, the central one being the longest. The genitalia are unusual in that the role of the furca and the valves appear to be interchanged (Eliot, 1973).



Genus Oxylides Hübner, 1819
In: Hübner, 1816-1826. Verzeichniss bekannter Schmettlinge: 77 (432 + 72 pp.). Augsburg.

Type-species: Papilio faunus Drury, by subsequent designation (Scudder, 1875. Proceedings of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences 10: 234 (91-293).).


Generic revision by Libert, 2004 (Lambillionea 104 (2) (Tome I): 143-158.)
A purely Afrotropical genus containing seven species. The ‘false heads’ have rounded wings, with well-developed false-heads on the underside of the hindwings.

Oxylides albata (Aurivillius, 1895)
Hypolycaena faunus var. albata Aurivillius, 1895. Entomologisches Nachrichten. Berlin 21: 382 (379-382).

Type locality: Democratic Republic of Congo: “Congo: Bangasso”. Neotype designated by Libert (2004: 149).

Diagnosis: The male can be distinguished from O. faunus camerunica by: the more violet tone on the upperside; the almost straight inner edge of the forewing apical patch, thereby reducing the amount of blue on the forewing; the blue on the forewing almost reaching the costa; the smaller marginal spots in the tornal area (the small white crowns above these spots are therefore closer to the margin). Females cannot be distinguished on the basis of their facies (Larsen, 2005a).

Distribution: Nigeria (Cross River Loop), Cameroon, Congo, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo (Mongala, Uele, Tshopo, Ituri, Equateur), Uganda (west), Rwanda.

Common name: Aurivillius’ common false head.

Habitat: Forest. Sympatric with O. faunus camerunica in the Cross River Loop, Nigeria (Larsen, 2005a).

Habits: Probably similar to those of O. faunus (Larsen, 2005a).

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.

Oxylides bella Aurivillius, 1899
Oxylides bella Aurivillius, 1899 in Aurivillius, 1898-9. Kungliga Svenska Vetenskapakademiens Handlingar 31 (5): 313 (1-561).

Type locality: Democratic Republic of Congo: “Kuilu-Fluss”.

Distribution: Democratic Republic of Congo. Known, apparently, only from the type(s).

Habitat:

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.

Oxylides binza Berger, 1981
Oxylides faunus binza Berger, 1981. Les Papillons du Zaire: 274 (543 pp.). Bruxelles.

Oxylides binza Berger, 1981 (raised to species level by Libert, 2004: 153).

Type locality: Democratic Republic of Congo: “Binza (Kinshasa)”.

Distribution: Democratic Republic of Congo (Kinshasa).
coerulescens Aurivillius, 1923 in Schultze and Aurivillius, 1923 (as ab. of Oxylides faunus). Ergebnisse der Zweiten Deutschen Zentral-Afrika Expedition 1(17): 1221 (1113-1242). Democratic Republic of Congo: “Belg. Kongo: Kimuenza”.

Oxylides faunus (Drury, 1773)
Papilio faunus Drury, 1773. Illustrations of Natural History 2: index et 2 (90 pp.). London.

Type locality: Ghana: “Golden Coast”.

Diagnosis: The genitalia are figured by Stempffer (1967).

Distribution: Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Togo, Nigeria, Cameroon.

Common name: Common false head.

Habitat: Primary forest. Also in degraded habitats near forest, as long as shade from a canopy is available (Larsen, 2005a).

Habits: The flight is weak (Heath, et al., 2002). A common forest butterfly in West Africa, keeping to the shade at all times. Both sexes take short flights, about a metre above the ground, often among large leaves such as those of the family Marantaceae (Larsen, 2005a). The operation of the very realistic false heads on the hindwing is enhanced when this butterfly alights – just before landing it twists through 180 degrees and therefore alights in a position facing the direction that it came from (Larsen, 1982). Both sexes readily visit flowers (Larsen, 2005a).

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.
Oxylides faunus faunus (Drury, 1773)
Papilio faunus Drury, 1773. Illustrations of Natural History 2: index et 2 (90 pp.). London.

Type locality: Ghana: “Golden Coast”.

Distribution: Guinea-Bissau (including Bijagos Islands), Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Togo, Nigeria (except Cross River loop).
hesiodus Fabricius, 1793 (as sp. of Hesperia). Entomologia Systematica emendata et aucta 3 (1): 260 (488 pp.). [West Africa]: “in India”. [False locality.]
Oxylides faunus camerunica Libert, 2004
Oxylides faunus camerunica Libert, 2004. Lambillionea 104 (2) (Tome I): 147 (143-158).

Type locality: Cameroon: “”.

Diagnosis: The male differs from that of the nominate subspecies in that they have slight white tornal crowns on the hindwing upperside, above the black spots. Females of ssp. camerunica have this crown slightly larger than in the nominate (Larsen, 2005a). Both sexes are very difficult to tell apart from O. albata.

Distribution: Nigeria (Cross River loop), Cameroon.

Specific localities:

Cameroon – Korup (Larsen, 2005a).

Oxylides feminina (Sharpe, 1904)
Hypolycaena faunus var. feminina Sharpe, 1904. Entomologist 37: 202 (202-204).

Oxylides feminina. Male. Left – upperside; right – underside. Wingspan: 29mm. Zambezi Bridge, Ikelenge, Zambia. 18.XII.1983. A.J. Gardiner. (Gardiner Collection).

Oxylides feminina. Female. Left – upperside; right – underside. Wingspan: 30mm. Zambezi Bridge, Ikelenge, Zambia. 27:12:83. A.J. Gardiner. (Gardiner Collection).
Type locality: Uganda: “Entebbe”.

Distribution: Uganda, Democratic Republic of Congo (Sankuru, Lualaba, Shaba, Maniema, Kivu), Zambia (north-west).

Specific localities:

Zambia – Ikelenge (Heath, et al., 2002).

Habitat:

Habits:

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.

Oxylides stempfferi Berger, 1981
Oxylides faunus stempfferi Berger, 1981. Les Papillons du Zaire: 273 (543 pp.). Bruxelles.

Type locality: Democratic Republic of Congo: “Sankuru Katako-Kombe”.

Distribution: Democratic Republic of Congo.

Habitat:

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.

Oxylides gloveri Hawker-Smith, 1929
Oxylides gloveri Hawker-Smith, 1929. Bulletin of the Hill Museum, Witley 3: 234 (234).

Type locality: Congo: “Sanga River, Nola-Byanga, French Congo”.

Distribution: Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo.

Habitat:

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.

Genus Syrmoptera Karsch, 1895
Entomologische Nachrichten. Berlin 21: 308 (289-322).

Type-species: Syrmoptera melanomitra Karsch, by original designation.


A purely Afrotropical genus containing six species. Generic revision by Libert, 2004. The ‘white false heads’ are closely related to the genus Oxylides, but the underside pattern is rather different.

Syrmoptera amasa (Hewitson, 1869)
Myrina amasa Hewitson, 1869 in Hewitson, 1862-78. Illustrations of diurnal lepidoptera. Lycaenidae. 1: 4 (1-228; 2: 95 pp.; Supplement: 1-48.). London.

Type locality: Nigeria: “Old Calabar”.

Diagnosis: See S. bonifacei.

Distribution: Nigeria (east and Cross River loop), Cameroon, Gabon.

Specific localities:

Nigeria – Old Calabar (TL); Onitsha (Larsen, 2005a); Oban Hills (Larsen, 2005a).

Cameroon – Korup (Larsen, 2005a).

Common name: White false head.

Habitat: Forest.

Habits: This is a rare butterfly, with a slow flight (Larsen, 2005a).

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.

Syrmoptera bonifacei Stempffer, 1961
Syrmoptera bonifacei Stempffer, 1961. Annales Musée Royal de l’Afrique Centrale (8) 94: 57 (73 pp.).

Type locality: Cameroon: “Cameroun anglais, Mamfé”.

Diagnosis: In the female the hindwing has a black margin; this is absent in S. amasa (Larsen, 2005a).

Distribution: Nigeria (east and Cross River loop), Cameroon, Congo.

General remarks: Named after Boniface Watulege, who collected butterflies for T.H.E. Jackson.

Specific localities:

Nigeria – Oban Hills (Boniface Watulege); Cross River Loop; Gashaka-Gumpti (Larsen, 2005a).

Cameroon – Mamfe (TL); Korup (Larsen, 2005a).

Common name: Boniface’s false head.

Habitat: Forest.

Habits: Generally scarce, especially in comparison to Oxylides faunus. The flight is slow for a thecline. In flight the female somewhat resembles an Oboronia (Larsen, 2005a).

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.

Syrmoptera caritas Libert, 2004
Syrmoptera caritas Libert, 2004. Lambillionea 104 (3) (Tome II): 443 (433-445).

Type locality: Central African Republic: “?”.

Distribution: Central African Republic.

Habitat:

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.

Syrmoptera homeyerii (Dewitz, 1879)
Hypolylaena homeyerii Dewitz, 1879. Nova Acta Academiae Caesarea Leopoldino-Carolinae Germanicum Naturae Curiosorum 4 (2): 206 (173-212).

Type locality: Angola: “Guinea aus dem 10 S.B., zwischen dem 17-22 O.L. von Greenw.”.

Distribution: Democratic Republic of Congo (Uele, Sankuru, Lualaba, Lomani, Tanganika, Maniema), Angola.

Habitat:

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.

Syrmoptera melanomitra Karsch, 1895
Syrmoptera melanomitra Karsch, 1895. Entomologische Nachrichten. Berlin 21: 308 (289-322).

Type locality: Cameroon: “Yaúnde-Station im Kamerun Hinterlande”.

Distribution: Cameroon, Gabon, Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo.

Habitat:

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.
Syrmoptera melanomitra melanomitra Karsch, 1895
Syrmoptera melanomitra Karsch, 1895. Entomologische Nachrichten. Berlin 21: 308 (289-322).

Type locality: Cameroon: “Yaúnde-Station im Kamerun Hinterlande”.

Distribution: Cameroon, Gabon, Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo (Cataractes, Kinshasa, Mongala).
Syrmoptera melanomitra nivea Joicey & Talbot, 1924
Syrmoptera nivea Joicey & Talbot, 1924. Bulletin of the Hill Museum, Witley 1: 544 (539-564).

Downgraded to a subspecies of S. melanomitra by Libert, 2004.



Type locality: Democratic Republic of Congo: “Belgian Congo: Lubilinga Valley, North-East Lubutu, 2,600 ft.”.

Distribution: Democratic Republic of Congo (Mongala, Uele, Tshopo, Tshuapa, Equateur, Sankuru).
androgyna Joicey and Talbot, 1924 (as female f. of Syrmoptera nivea). Bulletin of the Hill Museum, Witley 1: 545 (539-564). Democratic Republic of Congo: “Belgian Congo, Kasai district”.

Syrmoptera mixtura (Hulstaert, 1924)
Oxylides mixtura Hulstaert, 1924. Revue de Zoologie et de Botanique Africaine 12: 174 (112-122, 173-194).

Removed from synonymy with S. homeyerii by Libert, 2004.



Type locality: Democratic Republic of Congo: “Région de Sasa”.

Distribution: Democratic Republic of Congo.

Habitat:

Early stages: Nothing published.

Larval food: Nothing published.


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