Butterflies of the
Amazon and Andes
Family - LYCAENIDAE
subfamily - THECLINAE
Tribe - EUMAEINI
© Adrian Hoskins
Almost all neotropical Theclinae species are placed in the Eumaeini.
The tribe is not particularly well represented in collections, so
until fairly recently a high percentage remained unstudied, and were
inappropriately filed away in the 'convenience' genus
Thecla. Many taxonomists have attempted
to rationalise the systematics of the Eumaeini, the most recent
being Robbins who published a revision in 2004, reclassifying the
taxa into 83 genera. Currently there are 1058 known species. Taking
into account their small size, secretive behaviour, and the great
similarities between many species, it is estimated that about
another 200 species probably remain to be discovered.
The genus Calycopis comprises of 72
species, variously distributed from Mexico to Paraguay. The males of
most species have metallic blue uppersides, while the females in
most cases tend to be a dull earthy brown colour. Both sexes of all
Calycopis species and have convex outer
margins to the forewings. The undersides bear a dark post median
line, and usually a short vertical line at the end of the discal
cells. The hindwings have a distinctively shaped wiggly 'hairstreak'
post-median line, and most species have either one or two
black-centred red spots at the tornus. The hindwings also bear 3
short white-tipped tails.
Calycopis demonassa and its close
relative buphonia are unusual because
their underside wings are umber rather than the typical grey of
other Calycopis species. They also lack
the usual red tornal spots, and their 'hairstreak' lines are edged
with broad brown bands as opposed to the thin red lines found on
most other species. Both sexes of buphonia
have dull earthy brown uppersides. Males of
demonassa have blackish forwings but their hindwings are an
extremely reflective iridescent violet-blue. Females of
demonassa have dull brown forewings and
pale silvery blue hindwings.
This species is known from Brazil and Colombia but probably also
occurs in Ecuador and Venezuela.
This species is found in rainforest and cloudforest at elevations
between about 400-1600m.
To be completed.
Calycopis butterflies probably spend most
of their lives at or near ground level, and are popularly known as
Groundstreaks. They seem to obtain all their sustenance from moisture
imbibed from the ground, or from the surface of leaves.