Mexican Cycadian (Eumaeus toxea [Godart])
Wing span: 1 1/4 - 2 inches (3.2 - 5.1 cm).
Identification: Abdomen upperside is black, below is red-orange. Upper surface of wing black covered with iridescent blue. Underside black; hindwing with rows of iridescent blue spots and one red-orange spot.
Life history: Eggs are laid in groups of 3-8 under new leaves of host. Young caterpillars feed on the outer layer of the leaf.
Flight: Many flights in Mexico, from April-December.
Caterpillar hosts: Cycads.
Adult food: Not reported. May include bird droppings.
Habitat: Tropical woodland.
Range: Honduras north to Mexico. Rare in South Texas, one stray to Florida.
Conservation: Not necessary for rare stray.
The Nature Conservancy Global Rank: GU - Unable to assign rank due to lack of available information.
Management needs: None reported.
Opler, P. A. and V. Malikul. 1992. A field guide to eastern butterflies. Peterson field guide #4. Houghton-Mifflin Co., Boston. 396 pages, 48 color plates. Scott, J. A. 1986. The butterflies of North America. Stanford University Press, Stanford, Calif. 583 pages, 64 color plates.
Author: Jane M. Struttmann
State and Regional References:
Opler, Paul A. 1999. Peterson Field Guide to Western Butterflies, revised edition. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Mass. Stanford, R.E. and P.A. Opler. 1993. Atlas of Western USA Butterflies. Privately published, Denver, Colo.