Moths of the Amazon
Superfamily - NOCTUOIDEA
Family - NOTODONTIDAE
subfamily - DIOPTINAE
Lyces annulata, Satipo, Peru ©
Dioptinae comprises of 456 known species arranged into 2 tribes and
43 genera. The moths are almost entirely neotropical in
distribution: only one species Phryganidia
californica being found north of Mexico. All are day-flying,
and most are brightly coloured, typically with aposematic patterns
in yellow, orange or white on a black ground colour. They are
involved in Batesian mimicry rings with various Ithomiine
butterflies, and with moths from the subfamilies Arctiinae (
Erebidae ) and Sterrhinae ( Geometridae ).
Dioptinae, like most other moths have tympanal organs 'ears' at the
base of the thorax. These are generally accepted as having evolved
to allow them to detect the echo-location calls of predatory bats.
These moths however are all day-flying species, and experiments have
shown that they are virtually deaf. This implies that their
ancestors were nocturnal, and that the ability to hear was lost when
they evolved to become day-flying and were no longer exposed to
Lyces species have a black or dark
brown ground colour, with longitudinal streaks or diagonal bands in
yellow or orange. They are similar in appearance to moths in the
family Arctiinae, and can sometimes only be distinguished from them
by close examination of the forewing venation which is trifine in
Dioptinae and quadrifine in Arctiinae.
Lyces annulata is
found in Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Brazil, Peru and Bolivia.
inhabits rainforest at elevations between about 200-800m.
To be completed.
The moths are diurnal and are usually
encountered singly in light gaps or along forest trails.