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Butterflies of the Amazon and Andes
Neglected Jewelmark
Sarota neglecta  STICHEL, 1910
Family - RIODINIDAE
subfamily - RIODININAE
Tribe - HELICOPINI
Sarota neglecta, Tatama NP, Colombia  Adrian Hoskins
Introduction
The genus Sarota was reviewed in 1998 by Jason Hall, who recognises a total of 20 species, found variously from Mexico to Bolivia, with the highest concentration in Ecuador. It has been estimated that certain locations along the base of the eastern Andes each hold up to 15 species. Most of them are extremely rare and elusive - so much so that only that even the most experienced observers rarely manage to see more than half a dozen species in a lifetime.
Both sexes of all Sarota species are characterised by having dull blackish or brownish uppersides which in some species are marked with suffused whitish spots. The undersides are reddish orange, marked with metallic silver streaks and lines, small black spots, and yellow margins.
All Sarota species have cute furry legs, but only a few have tails on the hindwings - these include subtessellata, turrialbensis, neglecta and craspediodonta from Central America, chocoensis from Colombia and Ecuador, and chrysus.
Sarota neglecta is found in Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, n.w Venezuela and western Ecuador.
Habitats
This species inhabits cloudforest at elevations between about 600-1600m.
Lifecycle
Females oviposit on mosses and liverworts ( Lejuniaceae ) that grow as epiphytes on old leaves of various understorey shrubs. The tiny eggs are white, globular and pitted like a sponge. The larvae when fully grown are protected by dense coat of whitish setae. If a larva is molested by an ant the setae break off and become lodged in the ant's mandibles, preventing attack. Larvae feed solitarily, and rest underneath leaves. The pupa is formed within a rolled leaf, lined with loose hairs.
Adult behaviour

Sarota neglecta is usually encountered in two's and three's. Both sexes roost under the leaves of bushes or saplings.

 

 

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