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1 March 2017 Notes on the Field Identification of the Intricate Satyr, Hermeuptychia intricata (Nymphalidae), and Its Ecology in South Carolina
Thomas B. Austin
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Abstract

Due to strong morphological similarities, the Intricate Satyr Hermeuptychia intricata has been difficult for lepidopterists to visually differentiate from the Carolina Satyr Hermeuptychia sosybius since the former's discovery in 2014. The historical confusion between the two species has resulted in a dearth of information on the ecology and life history of the less abundant and more narrowly distributed H. intricata. I observed adults and larvae of both species in the field at five sites across three counties in the coastal plain of South Carolina, USA. Hermeuptychia intricata exhibited subtle but notable differences in both preferred habitat and behavior that are useful in field identification. Both species utilize various species of Rosette Grasses, Dichanthelium spp., as larval food sources. Larvae of the two species are extremely similar in appearance with only a slight difference in overall hue. Pupae appear identical save for the absence of an abdominal spot in H. intricata. The ghost band phenomenon and the sinuous band gap feature appear to be unreliable diagnostics but, with further research, may prove useful characteristics for identifying female H. intricata and H. sosybius, respectively. A better understanding of the ecology and life history of the cryptic H. intricata, as well as enhanced methods for its field identification, can facilitate the future study and conservation of the species.

Thomas B. Austin "Notes on the Field Identification of the Intricate Satyr, Hermeuptychia intricata (Nymphalidae), and Its Ecology in South Carolina," The Journal of the Lepidopterists' Society 72(4), 307-313, (1 March 2017). https://doi.org/10.18473/lepi.72i4.a8
Received: 4 June 2018; Accepted: 23 July 2018; Published: 1 March 2017
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KEYWORDS
behavior
Dichanthelium
habitat
host plant
life history
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