Euptychia roraima Nakahara, Fratello & Harvey, 2014

Nakahara, Shinichi, Fratello, Steven A. & Harvey, Donald J., 2014, A new species of Euptychia Hübner, 1818 (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae: Satyrinae: Satyrini) from Mount Roraima, Guyana, Zootaxa 3881 (3), pp. 291-300 : 292-296

publication ID

publication LSID


persistent identifier

treatment provided by


scientific name

Euptychia roraima Nakahara, Fratello & Harvey

new species

Euptychia roraima Nakahara, Fratello & Harvey   , new species

( Figs. 1–3 View FIGURE 1 View FIGURE 2 View FIGURE 3 )

Euptychia sp.   ; Fratello, 2004: 125, figs. 7–8

Description. MALE: Holotype forewing length 16 mm.

Wing shape. Forewing nearly triangular but with costa convex, inner margin almost straight, outer margin almost straight (very slightly concave), with a distinctive, sharply angled apex, tornus approximately right-angled; hindwing subtriangular, costa slightly convex, outer margin convex, rounded tornus, anal margin incised basal to tornus.

Wing venation. Forewing recurrent vein present in discal cell.

Dorsal surface. Ground colour dark brown on inner two thirds of forewing and inner half of hindwing, lighter brown and moderately translucent distal to dark brown inner wing areas and along costa and subcosta of both wings and also anal margin and anal interspaces of hindwing; fringe greyish brown.

Ventral surface. Forewing ground colour greyish brown, distal one-third slightly paler; a narrow, dark brown band extends basally along the inflation (swollen vein) from radial vein to wing base; regular, narrow and dark brown discal band extends from radial vein, crossing discal cell in a slightly outward diagonal direction, fading away before touching vein 2A, slightly inward diagonal direction below cubital vein; postdiscal band almost parallel, same color, but broader than discal band, extends from radial vein and traverses towards the inner margin until reaching vein 2A, and roughly delimiting the paler distal region; sinuate submarginal band, extends from apex to tornus, in a slightly inward direction below vein M3, gradually broadens towards vein Cu2 and slightly narrower after this vein and also very slightly angled back towards the outer margin; undulating marginal band, same color as submarginal band, slightly thinner than submarginal band and aligned parallel to the submarginal band, extends from the apex towards the tornus, undulating until vein Cu1 and then straight and narrowing towards the inner margin at the tornus after this vein; fringe brownish; ocellus in cell M1, wider than the interspace and spilling over vein M1 and M2, ringed in yellow with one centered white pupil in black area; hindwing ground color almost same as that of forewing, distal one-third slightly paler; dark brown regular band extends from the costal margin to inner margin, near the base of hindwing; discal band almost same color, same width as that of forewing band, traverses from costal margin towards inner margin, very slightly curved distally, near the inner margin sharply angled basally; postdiscal band almost same color, mostly same width as that of fore- wing band, extends from costal margin towards the inner margin, bent outwardly posterior to vein M2, parallel to discal band after vein M3, narrower and curving distally below 1A, joining the submarginal band near the anal margin, roughly delimiting the paler distal region; irregular submarginal band, slightly paler than basal three bands, traverses from apex along submargin towards the tornus, broadens and rounded M-shaped in each of cells M3 and M2, fused to post discal band in cell 2A and ScR1; wavy marginal band, much thinner and same color as submarginal band, traverses along the distal margin from the apex towards tornus; rufous hints at the tornus; fringe greyish brown; three submarginal ocelli, the smallest of all, in cell ScRs, encircled by a yellow ring surrounded by dark brown ring, with one centered white pupil in the black area; larger ocellus in cell M1, tornally spilling over vein M2, encircled by a yellow ring sur rounded by dark brown ring and one centered white pupil in the black area; largest ocellus, likewise ringed in yellow surrounded by dark brown ring, with one centered white pupil in the black area in cell Cu1, apically and tornally spilling over vein Cu1 and Cu2 respectively.

Head. ( Figs. 2A–B, 2D–E View FIGURE 2 ) Eyes dark brown and densely hairy; palpi prominent, approximately 2 times head height, cream-colored, densely pilose ventrally with long brown hairs (see Figs. 2A–B View FIGURE 2 for detail); antennae orangebrown, approximately half of the length of costa from base to apex (see Figs. 2D–E View FIGURE 2 for detail).

Thorax. ( Fig. 2C View FIGURE 2 ) Dark brown and hairy (see Figs. 2C View FIGURE 2 for detail).

Abdomen. Dark brown and hairy, dorsally and laterally, grayish and hairy ventrally.

Genitalia. ( Fig. 3 View FIGURE 3 ) (1 specimen prepared: vial #2013-06 (USNM)) Tegumen shaped somewhat like a parallelogram in lateral view, anterior dorsal margin concave, ventral margin concave, shaped like a trapezium in dorsal view, a short conspicuous posterior projection of the tegumen above the uncus, one-third length of uncus; uncus anteriorly hairy, rather narrow and short, posterior tapered and hooked in lateral view, evenly broad in dorsal view; gnathos extending ventrally from the posterior ventral margin of tegumen, triangular in lateral view; vinculum fused to anterior ventral margin of tegumen and medially divided; appendices angulares present; saccus short and broad in lateral view, anteroventrally a continuation of the vinculum; valvae sparsely hairy, positioned at approximately a 45 degree angle to the horizontal; valva distal one-third narrow and tapered, apex slightly rounded; basal two-thirds rather oval, ventral margin convex when compared to the dorsal margin, slightly narrowing posteriorly in lateral view, hooked right-angled inwards forming a boot-shape in dorsal view; aedeagus tubular, in dorsal view straight and with broadening anterior portion which opens anterodorsally, in lateral view posterior half of aedeagus narrower, curved upwards, broadening anteriorly, approximately the length of the saccus plus tegumen, with cornuti absent.

FEMALE: Unknown.

Holotype. ♂, Guyana: N. slope Mt. Roraima , 1st Camp 800m, 5 ° 17'N 60 ° 45'W, 12.lll– 16.IV.2001, W. Hinds & R. Williams leg. This holotype is deposited in the USNM ( USNM ENT 00275158 View Materials ). GoogleMaps  

Etymology. This specific epithet is derived from the Pemón Indian word, in regard to the great tepui massif where the first and only known specimen was found. This female noun is used here in apposition to the genus name.

Distribution. ( Fig. 5 View FIGURE 5 ) Euptychia roraima   is known to date only from the type locality low on the northern slope of Mt. Roraima in northwestern Guyana. This site lies within the Pantepui region which has been described briefly in the introduction. The elevation (800m) at which E. roraima   was collected, with no known lowland records, implies that it could be a premontane species (see Neild 1996, for explanation of premontane and montane). If true, this species could also be found in other areas of the Mt. Roraima massif; where there are existing tracts of premontane forest on all aspects of Mt. Roraima (see Google Earth). Given that there has been both a rather limited collecting effort and publication record from a small total part of this great tepui massif: the Guyanan side, the Brazilian aspect, the Gran Sabana approach on the extensive Venezuelan portion, and the summit plateau (e.g. Bell 1932; Huntington 1933; Viloria & Pyrcz 1994, 1999), we assume there remain vast areas of premontane forest on the various aspects that have never been explored for butterflies (A. Neild, pers. comm.). However, most premontane species would probably not be restricted to a single tepui massif, but have wider distributions in the Pantepui, as noted in many endemic species from this biogeographic region (e.g. Greta clavijoi Neild, 2008   ( Ithomiinae   ), Antirrhea ulei (Strand, 1912)   ( Morphinae   ), Catasticta duida Brown, 1932   ( Pieridae   ); see Costa et al. 2014a). Though there are a small number of butterflies from other groups that have thus far been found on only a single tepui: Pagyris renelichyi Neild, 2008   ( Ithomiinae   ), Memphis viloriae Pyrcz & Neild, 1996   ( Charaxinae   ), Perisama tepuiensis Attal & De Marmels, 2012   ( Biblidinae   ) and others (A. Neild, pers. comm.), the few known Rhopalocera possibly considered endemic to a single tepui massif are upper premontane and montane pronophiline Satyrinae   whose lower elevation limits are substantially higher than the elevation at which E. roraima   was collected (e.g. Viloria 1995; Viloria et al. 1999). However, for any butterfly species to be considered truly endemic to a single tepui massif, this would need to be proven through extensive collecting on all tepuis, entailing numerous expeditions to individual tepuis in different seasons and on various aspects of the tepuis. As for the probability that E. roraima   is a more widespread Guianan and Amazonian lowland species that ranges into premontane forest in the Pantepui, this is a possibility we cannot certainly exclude; however, a fairly extensive collecting history in these regions to this date, with no known lowland records as previously mentioned, seems to indicate otherwise (A. Neild, pers. comm.; Neild, 1996, 2008; pers. obs. based on 500+ days collecting by SF and museum collection examination).

Behavior and habitat. Nothing is known concerning the behavior of this species. The single individual was captured by people dedicated solely to collect some butterflies in a remote, little studied region. Even though the photos of Mt. Roraima ( Figs. 4–5 View FIGURE 4 View FIGURE 5 ) were taken at elevations above the capture site (800m) of E. roraima   , they are indicative of this species’ habitat and there is some evidence to assume this species could also be found at these higher elevations. As noted above, extensive collecting in both the Guyanan and Venezuelan lowlands with no records of this taxon, suggests that it is a premontane Pantepui endemic. Even though it is presumed to be so, there is a possibility that this species will be found at elevations lower than 800m in the Pantepui. For example, the second author has recorded a small number of species, that though considered premontane species, were captured at much lower elevations at Kaieteur Falls and Gorge in the easternmost area of Guyana’s Pacaraima Mountains: the charaxine Memphis montesino Pyrcz, 1995   (250m) and the riodinids Napaea fratelloi Hall & Harvey, 2005   (400m), and Mesosemia phace Godman, 1903   and Hyphilaria anthias (Hewitson, 1874)   , both taken as low as 100m ( Fratello 2012). It is interesting to note that another undescribed Euptychia species   collected in the Venezuelan Pantepui at approximately 1000m and above, is known from a single NHM specimen from the lower elevations of Kaieteur (A. Neild and M. Costa, pers. comm.).

Diagnosis. Euptychia roraima   can be separated from other members of the genus by its combination of triangular forewing shape resulting from an especially acute apex and sharply angled tornus; dark coloration, both dorsally and ventrally; thin ventral median and postmedian bands, and a prominent ventral wavy marginal band.


Departamento de Geologia, Universidad de Chile


Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History














Euptychia roraima Nakahara, Fratello & Harvey

Nakahara, Shinichi, Fratello, Steven A. & Harvey, Donald J. 2014

Euptychia sp.

Fratello, S. A. 2004: 125