Butterflies of the
Amazon and Andes
Boisduval's Grass Yellow
Eurema arbela GEYER,
Family - PIERIDAE
subfamily - COLIADINAE
Eurema arbela gratiosa, Otun-Quimbaya, Colombia
© Adrian Hoskins
Eurema was until fairly recently
represented in the neotropics by about 30 species, but several have
now been reclassified as Pyrisitia,
leaving a total of 19 currently recognised species in the
neotropical region. Elsewhere in the world the genus has 9 species
in Africa, 2 in Madagascar, and 9 in the Oriental and Australian
These smallish butterflies are characterised by having yellow or
white uppersides, with dark apical markings. The forewings have a
strongly curved costa and a squarish apex. The hindwings are rounded
in most species, but in salome,
arbela the termen is projected to a point.
various species can be told apart by the pattern of mottled dark
markings on the underside hindwings, and by the black borders on the
upperside forewings, which differ according to species.
Eurema arbela is found from Mexico to Bolivia.
This species was
previously known as Eurema boisduvaliana,
hence the common name.
This is a pre-montane cloudforest species, occurring along
roadsides, riverbanks and forest edge habitats at elevations between
To be completed.
are usually encountered singly, or occasionally in two's or three's,
seen imbibing dissolved minerals from damp ground at the edge of
ditches, runnels or roadside banks in forested areas.
Females are more often
seen nectaring at flowers along roadsides and riverbanks, or when
exploring sunny wood edge habitats in search of egg-laying sites.
The flight is fluttery but fairly
rapid, and always close to the ground.
Eurema arbela, male, Catarata Bayoz, Le Merced, Peru
© Peter Bruce-Jones