Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Mexican Bluewing
Myscelia ethusa (Doyère, [1840])

Family: Nymphalidae
Subfamily: Biblidinae
Identification: Forewing apex is truncated. Upperside is black with iridescent blue bands; outer half of forewing has white spots.
Wing Span: 2 1/2 - 3 inches (6.4 - 7.6 cm).
Life History: Young caterpillars make a resting perch by attaching dung pellets and silk to a leaf vein. The adults rest on tree trunks with wings closed, exposing their undersides which look like bark.
Flight: Many flights throughout the year in South Texas.
Caterpillar Hosts: In the tropics, Dalechampia in the spurge family (Euphorbiaceae).
Adult Food: Rotting fruit.
Habitat: Stream valleys with dry scrub or scattered tropical forest.
Range: Colombia north through Central America to Mexico. Periodically strays and lives in the lower Rio Grande Valley, Texas.
Conservation: Conserve remaining Tamaulipan brushland habitats in the lower Rio Grande Valley, Texas.
NCGR: G4 - Apparently secure globally, though it might be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management Needs: Expand the lower Rio Grande Valley refuge complex. Protect existing habitats on refuges.