Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Chestnut Leafwing
Memphis echemus (Doubleday, [1849])


Family: Nymphalidae
Subfamily: Charaxinae
Identification: Upperside is dark chestnut brown with diffuse black near the edges. Hindwing has at least 2 white-capped black spots near tail. Underside resembles a dead leaf.
Wing Span: 2 1/4 - 2 3/4 inches (5.7 - 7 cm).
Life History: Males perch to await for females. Young caterpillars make a perch out of a leaf midvein; older ones live in a rolled leaf shelter.
Flight: The dry season form flies from August-March; the wet season form from March-November. Flies in May in South Texas.
Caterpillar Hosts: Cuala (Croton lucidus) in the spurge family (Euphorbiaceae).
Adult Food: Rotting fruit and carrion.
Habitat: Various tropical forest habitats.
Range: Cuba. Butterflies are occasionally blown by wind to the Isle of Pines; New Providence, Andros, and Cayman Islands; and very rarely to South Texas.
Conservation: Not required for rare stray.
NCGR: GU - Unable to assign rank due to lack of available information.
Management Needs: None reported.
Comments: NULL