Butterflies of the Amazon and Andes
Amazon Nightfighter
Dyscophellus porcius  FELDER & FELDER, 1862
subfamily - PYRGINAE
Dyscophellus porcius, Satipo, Peru Adrian Hoskins
The genus Dyscophellus comprises of 9 large crepuscular skippers, all species being confined to the neotropical region. The wings of males of generally fulvous or reddish-brown in colour, and feature small hyaline "windows" and vague dark markings. Females have dark earthy-brown wings which are broader and more rounded than those of males. They have several large hyaline windows on the forewings, and a regular pattern of smaller windows on the hindwings.
In common with many other members of the Pyrginae, the leading edge ( costa ) of the forewing of Dyscophellus males has a fold within which are androconial scales. These disseminate pheromones which are used to entice females to copulate.
Dyscophellus porcius is found in eastern Peru, and in the upper Amazon basin of Brazil. It probably also occurs in Ecuador and Bolivia.
This species is found in tropical rainforest at altitudes between about 200-800m.
Adult behaviour

In common with other crepuscular skippers the butterflies habitually hide under leaves in daylight hours, with their wings held fully outspread. As dusk falls they become very active, whirring about rapidly along forest trails, and at a glance can be mistaken for hawkmoths. Males will visit dung, urine-tainted soil, peccary wallows and other unsavoury sources of mineralised moisture, together with Macroglossinae hawkmoths and other crepuscular skippers including Salatis, Porphyrogenes, Bungalotis and Nascus.  Although the butterflies are probably oblivious of each other's presence, there is a general impression of a free-for-all mle - an illusion of aggression in their behaviour - hence the popular name "night fighter" skippers.



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