Staphylus esmeraldus, new species. Figs. 1, 2 (♂), 3 (♂
Male: Head and most of the distal two segments of the palpus
brilliant iridescent green above ; frons, upper surface of the
proximal segment of the palpus and the tip of the third segment
black. Cheek and palpus below dark gray. Antenna dark
brown above, below with shaft ringed with brown and yellow
and yellow alone inside flexion of club; nudum dull brown.
Thorax and abdomen above thickly covered with blackish-brown
hairs intermingled with a few golden ones ; below, thorax and
abdomen brown ; legs brown.
Upper surface of forewing dark brown sparsely overlaid with
golden scales, shaded darker basad and with prominent black
spot at the end of the cell. Two transverse dark bands are
present, one lying just outside the cell and the other along the
margin. The costal fold is well developed. Hindwing above
also dark brown thinly overscaled with gold, darker basad, with
a thin, dark extradiscal line and poorly denned dark submarginal
spots. Under surface of forewing unmarked, rich dark brown,
and that of the hindwing dark brown with basal gold over-
scaling and a few scales of the same color forming an ill-defined
mesial spot-band. The fringes of both wings above and below
dark brown. Length of forewing of holotype, 13 mm.
The male genitalia are characteristic of the green-headed
Staphylus with a massive, straight tegumen ; a small, curved
uncus ; no scaphium and ornamented valvae. The well-devel-
oped dorsal median spine on the valva serves to separate the
male genitalia of esmeraldus from those of S. chlorocephala
The female is unknown.
Described from a single specimen. Holotype ♂: COSTA
RICA: 10 mi. W. of Guapiles, Prov. Limon, 520 m.;10.viii.1963;
perched on foliage with wings outstretched along forest trail,
tropical wet forest (Lee D. Miller) ; ♂ genitalia slide no.
M-1457 (Lee D. Miller).
The Holotype is deposited in the collection of Carnegie
Museum (C. M. Ent. Type No. 512).
This species can be keyed only with difficulty to chloro-
cephala in Evans' (1953: 84) key to Staphylus since he men-
tions a tornal white area on the under surface of the hindwing
which is totally absent in esmeraldus. The only other green-
headed Staphylus, chlora Evans, is totally different, as may be
seen in the diagnosis of the chlorocephala group which follows:
1. chlorocephala—Contrasting dark and pale bands above ;
no hyaline forewing spots ; forewing costal fold well developed ;
under surface of hindwing with a tornal white shade; southern
2. esmeraldus—Dark bands above less prominent; no hyaline
forewing spots ; forewing costal fold well developed ; under
surface of hindwing dark tornally with a few golden scales ;
3. chlora—Dark bands above less prominent; forewing with
prominent hyaline apical and discal spots ; no costal fold on
forewing ; under surface of hindwing dark tornally ; Bolivia and
Brazil (Rio Tapajos, Para).
The holotype of esmeraldus is the first record for its group
in Central America ; in fact, this group has previously been
recorded from no closer than central Brazil. This apparent
gap in the distribution of the chlorocephala group may be real
or not since these insects are rare wherever they are found,
closely resemble some of the commoner Staphylus in flight and
may have been overlooked by many collectors who were chiefly
concerned with the gaudier, more conspicuous butterflies. In
any event, members of this group of Staphylus should be sought
wherever there are suitable tropical wet or rain forests through-
out South America and at least southern Central America.