Butterflies of the
Amazon and Andes
Callicore felderi cajetani
Family - NYMPHALIDAE
subfamily - BIBLIDINAE
Tribe - CALLICORINI
Callicore felderi cajetani,
Tingo Maria, Peru
© Adrian Hoskins
There are 20 known species in the genus
Callicore, all of which bear
distinctive and graphic patterns on the underside hindwings, often
resembling numbers or letters of the alphabet. A few have more
abstract patterns such as the row of 8 spots found on
felderi. The uppersides of all
Callicore species are black, marked on
the forewings with bright red or orange bands. The hindwings are
black, and in some species have red or orange markings.
had a blue sheen on the hindwings.
The easily caught mud-puddling males of many
Callicore species are killed in vast numbers for their wings
which are used by the souvenir trade for the production of decorated
plates, jewellery, place mats and other trivia. Although this
practice is abhorrent to naturalists it probably has little effect
on population dynamics, as the males will have already mated and
passed on their genes. Females are more difficult to capture, so are
usually able to fulfil their egg-laying potential.
is endemic to Peru. The Upper Amazonian subspecies
felderi has an orange band on the
forewing, while the Andean subspecies cajetani
has a red band.
This species inhabits lowland rainforest
and Andean foothills
at altitudes between about 200-1500m.
I have no
information specific to felderi. In
most Callicore species the eggs are
white, and are laid singly on Serjania,
Allophylus or other Sapindaceae.
butterflies have a rapid and powerful flight over short distances.
They are usually encountered as solitary males, visiting river beaches
where they imbibe dissolved minerals from urine-soaked ground.
sunny weather they
commonly settle on the hands, limbs and faces of humans to imbibe