Butterflies of the
Amazon and Andes
Family - NYMPHALIDAE
subfamily - BIBLIDINAE
Tribe - EPICALIINI
subtribe - EPIPHILINA
Epiphile dilecta, Tatama NP, Colombia ©
The Biblidinae are recognised by their diverse but simple and
colourful patterns. In the neotropics their representatives include
the tribe Epiphilina, which includes the genera
Bolboneura and Epiphile.
There are 16
Epiphile species, distributed variously
from Mexico to Bolivia. All have a similar pattern of bright orange
bands on a dark brown ground colour. In males of most species the
dark areas are overlaid with a strong purple-blue iridescence. In
females the orange is replaced by white, and there is no
iridescence. The underside hindwings of all species are similar to
those of dilecta, having a marbled
pattern with a series of post-median ocelli and a cream 'tooth' mark
on the costa.
Epiphile dilecta is found in Colombia,
Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia. There are 3 named subspecies,
distinguished by the width of the orange bands.
This species inhabits cloudforest at elevations between about
To be completed.
butterflies spend most of the day high in the canopy, but males
occasionally descend to imbibe mineralised moisture from the edges of
shallow streams. They rarely fully outspread their wings but often
hold them at an angle of 45°, or fan them rapidly as they walk over
the wet ground.