Butterflies of the
Amazon and Andes
Family - NYMPHALIDAE
subfamily - SATYRINAE
Tribe - SATYRINI
Peru ( note the parasitic red mite on hind leg )
© Dave Griffiths
There are 1100 known species of Satyrinae in the neotropical region.
About 570 of these are placed in the
subtribe Pronophilina - a diverse group of high altitude cloudforest
butterflies, all of which are confined to the neotropical region.
The vast majority are found only in the Andes, but 4 species are
known from the Atlantic cloudforests of Brazil, and there are a
further 6 species that are endemic to Guatemala, Costa Rica or
Mexico. More oddly there is one genus Calisto
that is found exclusively on the Caribbean islands of Cuba and
The genus Mygona
comprises of only 2 known species - irmina
from Venezuela, and prochyta which is
distributed from Ecuador to Bolivia. The type location of
prochyta prochyta is Bolivia. There are
4 other subspecies, namely poeania from
Ecuador; and the Peruvian endemics chyprota,
This is a forest species found at altitudes between about
The lifecycle appears to be unrecorded. The following
generalisations are applicable to the subtribe Pronophilina and are
probably applicable to
eggs are round, white or pale greenish white, and laid singly on the
foodplants or on surrounding vegetation. The larvae are typically
pale brown, marked along the back and sides with narrow dark
stripes, and tapering towards each end. The head is large in
proportion to the body and has two short forward-pointing horns. The
tip of the abdomen is equipped with a pair of caudal prongs which
are used to flick the frass away from the feeding area.
The larvae of all known Pronophilina feed on
Chusquea - a genus of bamboo which
grows in thickets, mainly along the courses of streams.
can be found imbibing moisture from narrow tracks within the forest,
but will also come out into more open areas occasionally.