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Porphyrogenes passalus (Herrich-Schäffer, 1869)
(Passalus Scarlet-eye)

Type Specimens
photo collection:


 

Pinned Specimens
photo collection:


 

Genitalia
photo collection:

Distribution and Larval Foodplants:

Panama, Colombia, Bolivia, Brazil (at least)

Diagnosis

The status of this taxon is currently unclear. Described from a female. Due to extreme sexual dimorphism, no males have been firmly associated with this female. The name passalus might represent a valid species, or a female of some Porphyrogenes species described earlier from males. Austin & Mielke (2008) treat this name as an "unassociated female". We will follow this treatment and will keep the name until more specimen are discovered and males are associated.

The lectotype female looks very much like P. eudemus, but lighter, with more green overscaling and with slight differences in the shape of the forewing white band.

Synonymy

 

Porphyrogenes passalus (Herrich-Schäffer, 1869)

Corresp-Bl. zool.-min. Ver. Regensb. 23(11): 172, no. 8.

Original Combination: [Eudemus] passalus

Type Locality: Not stated

Types: Lectotype in MNHU, designated by Austin and Mielke 2008, Insecta Mundi 0044: 30, figs. 43 ♀ D, 44 ♀ V.

The status of this name is unclear and it represents an "unassociated female."

 

Bibliography

Original description from:

Herrich-Schäffer, Gottlieb August Wilhelm 1867-71. Prodromus systematis lepidopterorum. Versuch einer systematischen Anordnung der Schmetterlinge. Correspondenz-Blatt des zoologisch-mineralogischen Vereines in Regensburg 23(11): 163-172 (November 1869).

The name appears on p. 172. Description in a form of identification key. Part of the key is also on p. 171. Relevant snippets are cited.

                                      German original                                         English translation
4. Eudamus  Swains.     Tropisches Amerika;  einige bis in die
                              Südstaaten der Union.
                                 [...] 
II. G r u p p e :   Der  Afterwinkel  der Hfl  in einen längeren oder
     kürzeren  abgerundeten  Lappen,  in  eine  spitzere oder stum-
     pfere  —  endlich durch Abrundung ganz verschwindende  —
     Ecke  vortretend (Eudamus  im  engeren Sinne).
1.  W  aller  Fl und der Körper grün oder blaulich behaart
A. Hfl  unten  mit  weissem  Schrägband ; die Costalpuncte der Z
     6—8 in gerader L, 9 gegen den VR gerückt
                                 [...]
B. – – ohne weisses Schrägband ; der Costalpunct der Z 6 wenig
     saumwärts  gerückt ; 7—9  in schräger L,  9 meist fehlend
a.  Costalpunct wenigstens in Z 6—8
                                 [...]
b.  Keine Costalpuncte
a.  Vfl mit weissem Schrägband
†   Der Fleck  der Z 3 ist ganz zwischen die beiden angrenzenden
     eingeschoben, ohne sie saumwärts zu überragen
§.  Die  Binde  endet  an der SC,  unten Z 1 bis zur Mitte von 1 b
     weiss                       7.  pervivax HV. - pertinax Stoll  35. 2
§§. – – –  in Z 12 mit gesondertem Fleck und reicht unten bis ge-
     gen R 1 der sonst ganz dunklen  Z 1             8.  passalus  HS
††  – – – – –  reicht  saumwärts viel weiter

Abkürzungen: Fl - Flügel; Vfl - Vorderflügel; Hfl - Hinterflügel; Z - Zelle; R - Rippe; L - Linie; SC- subcosta; W - Wurzel;
VR - VorderRippe.
4. Eudamus  Swains.     Tropical   America,   and   some   to   the 
                               Southern   states   of   the   Union. 
                                 [...] 
II. G r o u p :    The   Anal   angle   of   the   Hw   with   a  longer  or 
     shorter   rounded   Lobe,    in    a   more    pointed  or  more  ob- 
     tuse     —     finally    by    Rounding   disappearing  entirely  
     protuberant  Corner  ( Eudamus  in  the  narrow  sense). 
1.  B[ases of]  all  W and  the  Body  scaled  with  green  or bluish 
A. Hw  below   with  white  Oblique  band ;  the Apical spots [in]  C
     6—8 in a straight L, 9 towards the Costa shifted
                                 [...] 
B. – – without  white  Oblique band ;  the Apical spot  [in]  C 6 small
     outwards shifted;  7—9  in oblique L,   9 mostly absent 
a.  Apical spots at least in C 6—8 
                                 [...] 
b.  No Apical spots
a.  Fw with white Oblique band
†  The  Spot [in] the C 3 is entirely between  the two adjacent [spots]
     inserted, without it outwards protruding 
§.  The  Band  ends at the SC,  ventrally C 1 until  the Middle of  1 b 
     white                             7.  pervivax HV. - pertinax Stoll  35. 2 
§§. – – –  in C 12 with a separate Spot and extends ventrally  to aga-
      inst V 1 [in] the otherwise fully dark C 1            8. passalus  HS
††  – – [–] – – –  extends outwards much further

Abbreviations: W - wing; Fw - forewing; Hw - hindwing; C - cell; V - vein; L - line; SC - subcosta
 

Text from:

Evans, William Harry 1952. A catalogue of the American Hesperiidae indicating the classification and nomenclature adopted in the British Museum (Natural History). Part II. Pyrginae. Section I. London, British Museum (Natural History). v + 178 pp., pls. 10-25.

species D.7.2, p. 155-156; description in a form of identification key: relevant snippets are cited here.

D.7. PORPHYROGENES Watson 1893 :

                                    [...]

Ia (9a).  Large,  ♂ F > 20 mm.

 Ib (6a).  H termen convex, origin of vein 6 nearer to the  
 origin of vein 7 than to the origin of vein 4.

 Ic (4a).  H origins of veins 2 and 7 opposite: cell > ½ wing.  

                                    [...]

 2 (I. 3).  ♂ above and below dark brown with the base F  
 and the tornal half H shining blue: a hyaline orange band  
 upf from mid costa to near termen in space 1b. ♀ above  
 dark brown, bases shining dark greenish blue: unf dark  
 brown: unh greenish brown, sparsely overlaid with grey  
 scales: upf with a macular white band placed as in the ♂.  
 Secondary sexual characters as in stupa, but the dorsal  
 tuft uph is less conspicuous and unh the wing is not  
 modified.

passalus. 2 sub-species.

 (a).  Smaller, ♂ F 21 mm.: orange band upf wider, 2 mm.,  
 even and compact.

Sub-sp. omphale Butler 1871: ♂ Venezuela: type B.M. Fig  
 Butler 1874.

 B.M.  2 ♂ Venezuela.  I ♀ Colombia.

 (b).  Larger, ♂ F 24 mm.: band narrow, I½ mm., more  
 irregular and tapering towards termen.

Sub-sp. passalus Hernch-Schäffer 1869: ♀ ? loc. MS fig  
 of type in B.M.  ♂  fig in Seitz as omphale.

 B.M.  I ♂ British Guiana.  2 ♂  2 ♀ Bolivia (La Paz.  
 Buenavista).  7 ♂ Up Amazons (Ega. St Paulo d'Olivenca.  
 Pebas.  Manaos).  3 ♂ Pará.

Comment: According to Austin & Mielke (2008), Evans incorrectly associated females described as passalus with males described as omphale. Therefore information about males passalus in Evans (1952) refers to omphale. P. passalus should be kept as an unassociated female.

Text from:

Austin, George T., and Olaf Hermann Hendrik Mielke 2008. Hesperiidae of Rondônia, Brazil: Porphyrogenes Watson (Lepidoptera: Pyrginae: Eudamini), with descriptions of new species from Central and South America. Insecta Mundi 0044: 1-56, 165 figs. (26 September 2008)

p. 1

Porphyrogenes omphale (Butler, 1871), reinstated status, is not synonymous with Porphyrogenes passalus (Herrich-  
Schäffer, 1869) and becomes a species-level taxon for which no subspecies are recognized; P. passalus was described  
from a female with no known male.             [...]        
           [...]           Porphyrogenes virgatus (Mabille, 1888) and Porphyrogenes eudemus (Mabille, 1888), considered  
synonyms of P. zohra and Porphyrogenes vulpecula (Plötz, 1882), respectively, without justification by Evans  
(1952), are removed from those synonymies and retained, along with P. passalus, as females without confirmed  
affinities. Lectotypes are here designated for       [...]     Eudamus passalus Herrich-Schäffer, 1869;       [...]        

p. 7

Porphyrogenes passalus omphale (Butler, 1871): Evans 1952, incorrect synonymy (see below).
                                                                                   [...] 

Evans (1952) identified the female of this species as a dark brown phenotype with “shining greenish  
blue” bases to the dorsal wings and a “macular white band” across the forewing. That phenotype had been  
described as Eudamus passalus Herrich-Schäffer, 1869. This synonymy, without apparent justification,  
seems to be incorrect since the apparent female of P. omphale is a black, blue, and orange phenotype (Fig.  
59, 60) similar to the male as described above. Therefore, Eudamus passalus is removed from synonymy  
with P. omphale and the latter is returned to its original species-level status.

p. 12

                                                         [...]                                                                 Evans (1952) considered  
the female of P. vulpecula to be similar to that of P. passalus. That phenotype, Thymele eudamus  
Mabille, 1888, was synonymized with P. vulpecula without justification by Evans (1955), a synonymy  
which has persisted to the present (e.g., Mielke 2004, 2005).

p. 30-31, f. 43, 44

Porphyrogenes passalus (Herrich-Schäffer, 1869)

(Fig. 43, 44)

Eudamus passalus Herrich-Schäffer, 1869. Type locality: unknown; female type (herein designated the  
 lectotype, Fig. 43, 44) in MNHU.

Description. Female (described from photographs of the type and one from Rio Songo, Bolivia, Fig.  
43, 44) - forewing length = 29.0 mm (from Bolivia), forewing apex rounded, not produced, termen convex,  
anal margin straight; hindwing termen convex, slightly concave just anterior to very short tornal lobe,  
vein Rs arising nearer to end of discal cell than to its base and distad of CuA2; dorsum blackish brown;  
forewing overscaled with dull blue-green basad, white band (prominently divided by blackish veins) from  
costa (where a single quadrate macule) through discal cell (this macule offset somewhat proximad from  
remainder of band), base of M3-CuA1, mid-CuA1-CuA2, and terminating in a tapering macule almost at  
termen in CuA2-2A; hindwing overscaled with dull blue-green, no indication of discal macules; erect  
brownish tuft on dorsum of vein 2A; fringes on both wings brown.

Venter similar to dorsum but duller, overscaling less extensive, forewing vein 2A prominently sinu-  
ate, modified tan scales in proximal 1/4 of CuA2-2A and in entire anal cell; hindwing with no discal  
macules; cell 2A-3A with groove just caudad of vein 2A.

Dorsal head and thorax dull blue-green, eyes apparently dark, palpi gray-brown, antennae missing,  
ventral thorax and pectus brownish with dull blue-green scales, legs and abdomen not examined (missing  
on type).

Genitalia - not examined.

Distribution and phenology. The distribution of P. passalus cannot be fully elaborated until all  
known specimens are re-examined, as some reported records are actually P. omphale. Females identified  
as P. passalus are known from Colombia, Bolivia (Rio Songo), and Brazil (Amazonas).

Diagnosis and discussion. Porphyrogenes passalus was described from a female from an un-  
known locale (Herrich-Schäffer 1869). The very worn specimen at MNHU here designated as the lecto-  
type (Fig. 43, 44), lacks an abdomen. It bears five labels as follows: / Origin. /, / Coll. H.-Sch. /, / passalus  
HS /, / Thym. Passalus HS. /, and / Passalus H.S. /. The existence of three similar taxa, yet to be  
associated with a conspecific male, justifies the need for the undoubted identity of Eudamus passalus  
through a designated lectotype.

The association of P. passalus with the phenotype of P. omphale (as its female) by Evans (1952) and  
the continued use of this synonymy (Mielke 2005) were not justified and have proven incorrect with the  
identification of the actual female of P. omphale (see above). Material assigned to P. passalus is distin-  
guished from similar phenotypes by the irregular appearance of the white band on the forewing where the  
macule in the discal cell is offset somewhat basad from the other macules of the series and it is promi-  
nently divided by dark veins. In addition, the costal macule is not divided and the wings are prominently  
convex with a short tornal lobe on the hindwing.

p. 32

                                                                                  [...]                                            Since the genitalia of  
two of the banded phenotypes (P. passalus, P. virgatus) have yet to be examined, nothing can be offered  
with respect to their interrelationships.

References:

Herrich-Schäffer, Gottlieb August Wilhelm 1867-71. Prodromus systematis lepidopterorum. Versuch einer systematischen Anordnung der Schmetterlinge. Correspondenz-Blatt des zoologisch-mineralogischen Vereines in Regensburg 23(11): 163-172 (November 1869). p. 172

Evans, William Harry 1952. A catalogue of the American Hesperiidae indicating the classification and nomenclature adopted in the British Museum (Natural History). Part II. Pyrginae. Section I. London, British Museum (Natural History). v + 178 pp., pls. 10-25. species D.7.2, p. 155-156

Austin, George T., and Olaf Hermann Hendrik Mielke 2008. Hesperiidae of Rondônia, Brazil: Porphyrogenes Watson (Lepidoptera: Pyrginae: Eudamini), with descriptions of new species from Central and South America. Insecta Mundi 0044: 1-56, 165 figs. (26 September 2008). p. 30-31, f. 43, 44

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