Butterflies of the
Amazon and Andes
Aguna aurunce HEWITSON,
Family - HESPERIIDAE
subfamily - PYRGINAE
Tribe - EUDAMINI
Aguna aurunce, Rio Tambo, Peru
© Adrian Hoskins
Pyrginae, popularly known as Flats or Spreadwings, are a
cosmopolitan subfamily distributed across temperate and tropical
habitats throughout the world. In the Americas there are 990
Eudamini includes 44 genera in the Americas. There are several
genera of Long-tailed Skippers Urbanus,
Polythrix, Typhedanus and
Aguna; which together comprise of about
The genus Aguna comprises of 26
medium-large neotropical skippers. All have a similar pattern of
hyaline windows on the forewings, but the configuration varies from
one species to another.
Many of the species including albistria,
ganna and panama
have long tail-like extensions to the hindwings. In others including
and aurunce these tails are vestigial.
One feature common to all species is the presence of a prominent
white median stripe on the underside hindwings. The body and
wing-bases of many Aguna species are
fluffy in appearance, being covered with metallic greenish hair-like
scales. In aurunce these scales are
golden in colour.
The most widespread
and common member of the genus is asander,
which has a very broad white band on the underside hindwing, short
tails, and an olive-brown thorax.
Aguna aurunce is distributed from
Colombia to Venezuela, south along the eastern Andes to Peru, and
east into Rondonia, Brazil.
This species is found in tropical forest at altitudes between about
Aguna are active in hot sunshine. They
have a very rapid flight, but tend to settle for quite long periods to
bask with wings half open on foliage.