Leucochimona icare matatha (Hewitson, 1873),

Nielsen, Gregory J. & Kaminski, Lucas A., 2018, Immature stages of the Rubiaceae-feeding metalmark butterflies (Lepidoptera: Riodinidae), and a new function for the tentacle nectary organs, Zootaxa 4524 (1), pp. 1-32: 20-22

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Leucochimona icare matatha (Hewitson, 1873)


Leucochimona icare matatha (Hewitson, 1873) 

Natural history. Adults fly slowly, close to the ground in the understory (as described in Brown 1992). Just as L. lagora  , males of this species were never observed openly perching like Mesosemia  males. Females were observed during the hottest hours of the day searching for host plants; eggs were deposited singly on the adaxial side of the leaves. The only host plant recorded at the study site was Manettia luteo-rubra (Vell.) Benth.  ( Figs. 116–117View FIGURES 116–124). This species is a liana that climbs over the vegetation but females only selected the leaves near the base of the plant for ovipositing ( Fig. 117View FIGURES 116–124). The development time from egg to adult lasted approximately 35 days. Larvae underwent four instars and no pupae were found attached to, or near the hosts. First and second instars fed on the adaxial leaf surface cutting channels and leaving little windows of the upper leaf epidermis intact ( Fig. 117View FIGURES 116–124), later instars fed on the leaf underside, eating all leaf layers. A first instar nymph of a chrysopid (Neuroptera) was recorded predating eggs. In simulated larva-ant experiments in laboratory, last instar larvae did not evert the TNOs when manipulated.

Description of immature stages. Egg ( Fig. 118View FIGURES 116–124). Embryonic development 8–9 days (n = 10). Height 0.36– 0.40 mm; diameter 0.60 mm (n = 5). Pale yellow-cream when freshly laid. Spherical with a flat bottom and have a pattern of small hexagons cells armed with small spines on the rib intersections. Micropilar area centered on the top.

First instar ( Fig. 119View FIGURES 116–124). Duration 3 days (n = 10). Head capsule width 0.30–0.32 mm (n = 4). Maximum length 2 mm. Head capsule whitish tan with black stemmata. Body whitish with intestinal content visible. Dorsal setae on prothoracic plate and abdominal segments black, subdorsal and lateral setae whitish.

Second instar. Duration 3–4 days (n = 10). Head capsule width 0.50–0.52 mm (n = 9), maximum length 3.5 mm. Head tan colored. Body whitish green with a subdorsal line of white spots. Dorsal setae dark brown, lateral setae and spiracles white. TNOs whitish.

Third instar ( Fig. 120View FIGURES 116–124). Duration 4 days (n = 10). Head capsule width 0.80–0.82 mm (n = 10), maximum length 6 mm. Head light green, body greenish with black setae dorsally and white setae laterally. TNOs are light green

Fourth (last) instar ( Figs. 121–122View FIGURES 116–124). Duration 6 days (n = 10). Head capsule width 1.40–1.60 mm (n = 8), maximum length 14 mm. Head light green, stemmata black; body medium yellowish-green with black setae dorsally and white setae laterally; spiracles white. TNOs are light green.

Pupa ( Figs. 123–124View FIGURES 116–124). Duration 11–12 days (n = 9). Maximum length 10–11 mm (n = 4), width at A2 3.5 mm. Body color green with white areas on prothorax and metathorax. A2 crested, anterior green, crest brown. Distal margin of wing case dark brown. On A4–A8, lateral area below spiracles black; spiracles white. A9–A10 red brown dorsally. Short setae upright on thoracic segments, pointing posteriorly on abdomen. Longer setae on mesothorax tubercles and A2 crest. Eye capsule setose. Silk girdle passes over A2.