Mexican Silverspot (Dione moneta Hübner)
Wing span: 3 - 3 1/4 inches (7.6 - 8.3 cm).
Identification: Upperside orange with brown at the wing bases; veins thick and dark. Underside hindwing brown with large silver spots.
Life history: Eggs are laid singly or in clusters on the host plant. Caterpillars eat slots into the leaves and sometimes feed together in groups. Adults sometimes roost in groups near the ground on short vegetation.
Flight: April-December in Texas, throughout the year in the tropics.
Caterpillar hosts: Many species of passion-vines (Passifloraceae).
Adult food: Flower nectar.
Habitat: Edges and openings in evergreen mid-elevation tropical forest.
Range: Brazil north through Central America and Mexico. Strays to southern New Mexico and Texas.
Conservation: Not necessary for stray.
The Nature Conservancy Global Rank: G5 - Demonstrably secure globally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
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.