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Butterflies of the Amazon and Andes
Amazonicus Beauty
Baeotus aeilus  STOLL, 1780
Family - NYMPHALIDAE
subfamily - NYMPHALINAE
Tribe - COEINI
Baeotus aeilus, male, Rio Alto Madre de Dios, Peru Adrian Hoskins
Introduction
This species was formerly known as B. amazonicus. It is one of 4 members of the genus Baeotus, all of which are confined to the neotropics.
The butterfly is sexually dimorphic - the male upperside being dark brown with a broad median band of reflective pale blue scales, while the female is banded with pale orange.
Habitats
Baeotus aeilus breeds in lowland wet tropical forests at altitudes below about 500m, and appears to be largely confined to the upper Amazon areas of Brazil, Ecuador and Peru.
Lifecycle
Unknown. The genus appears to be very closely related to Historis, which suggests that Moraceae and Urticaceae are probable foodplants.
Adult behaviour

Males are typically seen in one's or two's, often in the company of Baeotus deucalion or B. japetus, as regular visitors to patches of mineral-rich damp sand along the shores of rivers in Amazonia.

In September 2008 at Boca Manu, Peru, I observed groups of up to 20 aggregating in company with swarms of other species on the muddy shore of the Rio Madre de Dios. It was a very hot sunny day, and the flooded river had just subsided following 2 days of heavy rain. This appears to indicate that the species emerges en masse after heavy rainfall, and the occurrence of large aggregations of males at such times is probably a regular event.

The butterflies have a rapid and powerful flight, and if disturbed, fly up and settle on nearby tree trunks or vegetation, but quickly return to their original feeding spot.

 

 

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