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FAMILY LYCAENIDAE

A global family that in the Afrotropical region comprises 123 genera and includes 1814 species. The family is divided into seven subfamilies, six of which have species located within the Afrotropical region. Each of these subfamilies is divided into a number of tribes. Only five subfamilies are represented at Semuliki, however Ducarme (2018) has recorded species representatives in all six subfamilies within the Ituri Forest and the DRC Semliki Valley. The lack of records for this group in the park is predominantly due to the lack of focused sampling for this group.  

A complete phylogenetic classification for this family has yet to be completed. For example, the phylogeny of the subfamily Poritiinae has not been fully concluded and the tribal classification within this subfamily is therefore not complete. In addition numerous Afrotropical genera in the tribe Polyommatini have also not been assigned subtribal status (Williams, 2015). Identification of Lycaenidae species in the field is in many cases impossible and species can only be identified from genitalia dissection. Where it states for species (waiting on field image), this is for website consistency and does not suggest a field identification. A pinned specimen from a collection would also be appropriate. 

Entomophagy occurs in both the Families Riodidinae, but most prominently in Lycaenidae where it has evolved independently on many occasions in the course of this groups evolution, occurring in at least 31 genera from four subfamilies (Espeland et al., 2023). Increasingly extreme historical environmental conditions with fire or aridification may have created the necessary triggers in the transfer into ant nests (Fiedler, 1998).
 

Genera information for the Family Lycaenidae has been taken from the Metamorphosis single genus documents published in pdf format by Mark Williams of the African Lepidopterists' Society.

Subfamily Poritiinae

Currently there are three Afrotropical tribes within this subfamily: Pentilini, Liptenini and Epitolini. The caterpillars from this subfamily feed on the algae found in one of the three types of morphological lichens, the foliate lichen.

Tribe Pentilini

This tribe contains a number of Afrotropical genera including the following found at Semuliki: Pentila, Ptelina, Liptenara, Telipna and Ornipholidotos.

Genus Telipna

An Afrotropical genus containing 28 species, 10 being recorded in Uganda. The genus has been divided into groups and subgroups (Libert, 2005). Seven species have so far been recorded at Semuliki (Libert, 2005), three more than documented in the checklist by Forbes (2018). The three species missing from the checklist are: T. acraea, T. citrimaculata and T. erica. This genus has an association with ant species (genera Crematogasta - 24 Ugandan species and Camponotus - 23 Ugandan species), the caterpillars producing secretions that the ants feed on while providing protection for the caterpillar. Telipna species geographical distribution is therefore dependent on the presence of ant colonies, although taxonomic diversity of lycaenid-ant associations in the Afrotropical region is low (Fielder, 2021).

Telipna aurivilli.jpeg
Telipna aurivilli.jpeg

Telipna aurivilli (female, upper and underside, sexes similar)

Telipna sanguinea.jpeg
Telipna sanguinea.jpeg

Telipna sanguinea (female, upper and underside, sexes similar)

Telipna nyanza.jpeg
Telipna nyanza.jpeg
Telipna. nyanza.jpg

Telipna nyanza (male, upper and underside, sexes similar)

Telipna nyanza (upperside)

Telipna nyanza.jpeg

Pinned images T. nyanza by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Telipna nyanza (underside)

Telipna consanguinea,  T. acraea, T. citrimaculata and T. erica  (waiting on field images)

Genus Pentila

Another solely Afrotropical genus containing 48 species. 11 species have been recorded from Uganda, seven so far been recorded from Semuliki: Pentila pauli, P. umangiana, Pinconspicua, Ptachyroides, Pcloetensi, P. hiendlmayri and P. hybrida.  The two latter species are missing from the Semuliki butterfly checklist (Forbes, 2018).This genus, like Telipna, has an ant association.

Pentila pauli.jpeg
Pentila pauli.jpeg
Pentila pauli.jpg

Pentila pauli (female, upper and underside, sexes similar)

Pentila pauli (male, upperside)

Pentila pauli.jpg

Pentila pauli (male, underside)

Pentila pauli.jpg
Pentila pauli.jpg

Pentila pauli (female, upper and underside)

Pinned images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Pentila unmangiata (5)-ink.jpeg
Pentila unmangiata (1)-ink.jpeg

Pentila umangiana (male, upper and underside, sexes similar)

Pentila inconspicua.jpeg
Pentila inconspicua.jpeg
Pentila inconspicua.jpeg

Pentila inconspicua (male, upper and underside)

Pentila inconspicua (female, upperside)

Pentila inconspicua.jpeg

P. inconspicua images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Pentila inconspicua (female, underside)

Pentila cloetensi.jpeg
Pentila cloetensi.jpeg
Pentila cloetensi.jpeg

Pentila cloetensi (male, upper and underside)

Pentila cloetensi (female, upperside)

Pentila cloetensi.jpeg

P. cloetensi images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Pentila cloetensi (female, underside)

Pentila tachyroides.jpeg
Pentila tachyroides.jpeg

Pentila tachyroides (female, upper and underside)

Pentila tachyroides.jpeg

Pentila tachyroides (male, underside)

Pentila tachyroides.jpeg

Pentila tachyroides (female, upperside)

Pentila tachyroides.jpeg
Pentila tachyroides.jpeg

Pentila tachyroides (male, underside)

Pentila tachyroides (female, underside)

Pinned P. tacyroides images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Pentila hiendlmayri and P. hybrida (waiting on field images)

Genus Ptelina

A small Afrotropical genus comprising only two species. Only P. carnuta has been recorded in Uganda and also at Semuliki, although P. subhyalina has been recorded in both the Ituri Forest and the DRC Semliki Valley (Ducarme, 2018).

Ptelina carnuta.jpeg
Ptelina carnuta.jpeg
Ptelina carnuta (2)b_edited_edited.jpg

Ptelina carnuta (male, undersides)

Ptelina carnuta (male, upperside)

Ptelina carnuta (1)a_edited.jpg

Ptelina carnuta (male, underside)

Pinned P. carnuta images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Genus Liptenara

Another small Afrotropical genus comprising three species: Liptenara hiendlmayri, L. batesi and L. schoutedeni. Only one species; L. hiendlmayri has been recorded in Uganda and this is found at Semuliki. One of the other species L. schoutedeni however has been recorded in the Ituri Forest to the north-west of Semuliki (Ducarme, 2018).

Liptenara hiendlmayri (waiting on field image)

Genus Ornipholidotos

A purely Afrotropical genus comprising 61 species. There have been 13 species recorded in Uganda but only five so far at Semuliki: O. overlaetiO. jacksoni., O. ugandae, O. ntebi and O.paradoxa. The latter threes species are an addition to the only two species recorded in the Semuliki checklist (Forbes, 2018). Ducarme (2018) has recorded 16 species in the area of the north-east of the DRC of which 14 have been located either in the Ituri Forest or Semliki Valley of the DRC. This suggests further targeted sampling of this genus is required to find the true representation of species diversity at Semuliki.

Ornipholidotos jacksoni.jpeg
Ornipholidotos jacksoni.jpeg

Ornipholidotos jacksoni (male, upper and underside)

Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Ornipholidotos overlaetiO. ugandae, O. ntebi and O. paradoxa (waiting on field images)

Tribe Liptenini

A large tribe containing 50 genera that includes 23 Afrotropical genera with eight of these genera so far with species recorded from Semuliki and 16 genera recorded from north-eastern DRC. The following recorded genera at Semuliki will be described: Liptena, Tetrarhanis, Falcuna, Larinopoda, Citrinophila, Toxochitona, Mimacraea and Mimeresia.

Genus Liptena

A large Afrotropical genus comprising 72 species with six being recorded at Semuliki. The three species recorded but missing from the Semuliki checklist are L. flavicans, L. decipiens and L. batesana. This compares with the 18 species described from Uganda and the 21 species recorded from the Ituri Forest and DRC Semliki Valley. Associated with forest in good condition, this is another under-sampled Lycaenidae genus at Semuliki that requires a concerted effort to identify the total diversity of species found in the park. 

Liptena xanthostola.jpeg
Liptena xanthostola.jpeg

Liptena xanthostola (male, upper and underside)

Liptena praestans.jpeg
Liptena praestans.jpeg
Liptena praestans.jpeg

Liptena praestans (male, upper and underside)

Liptena praestans (female, upperside)

Liptena praestans.jpeg

Liptena images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Liptena praestans (female, underside)

Liptena decipiens.jpeg
Liptena decipiens.jpeg

Liptena decipiens (female, upper and underside)

Liptena opaca, L. batesana and L. flavicans (waiting on field images)

Genus Tetrarhanis

A small Afrotropical genus comprising 15 species with two being recorded at Semuliki: Tetrarhanis ilala and T. ilma. Three species have been recorded in Uganda with T. stempfferi so far not being recorded at Semuliki, although it has been recorded in the Ituri Forest but only in the Labwor Hills in Northern Uganda. Again these two species are associated with forest in good condition. 

T ilmaB-ink_edited.jpg

Tetrarhanis ilma (male, underside)

Tetrarhanis ilma.jpeg
Tetrarhanis ilma.jpeg

Tetrarhanis ilma (male, upper and underside)

Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Tetrarharnis ilala (waiting on field image) 

Genus Falcuna

Another small Afrotropical genus comprising 16 species with three being recorded at Semuliki: Falcuna margarita, F. kasai and F. orientalis. Four species have been recorded in Uganda with F. iturina so far not being recorded at Semuliki. This species however has been recorded in the Ituri Forest and the DRC Semliki Valley but within Uganda only recorded in the region of the Rwenzori Mountains.

Falcuna margarita.jpg

Falcuna margarita (male, underside)

Falcuna kasai.jpeg
Falcuna kasai.jpeg

Falcuna kasai (male, upper and underside)

Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Falcuna orientalis (waiting on field image) 

Genus Larinopoda

An Afrotropical genus comprising only six species with two being recorded at Semuliki: Larinopoda tera and L. lagyra.  These two species are the only recorded species in Uganda.

Larinopoda tera.jpeg
Larinopoda tera.jpeg

Larinpoda tera (male, upper and underside)

Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Larinopoda lagyra.jpeg
Larinopoda lagyra.jpeg

Larinpoda lagyra (male, upper and underside)

Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Genus Citrinophila

An Afrotropical genus comprising seven species with two species so far being recorded at Semuliki: Citrinophila erastus and C. tenerea. The latter species is missing from the Semuliki checklist and has been included in the 'Species records and additions' page. One further species has been recorded in Uganda, C. unipunctata although a specific location has not been reported. Together with another species, C. terias all these four species have been recorded in the Ituri Forest in the DRC while C. unipunctata has also been recorded in the DRC Semliki Valley.

Citrinophila erastus  (male, upper and underside)

Citrinophila tenerea (waiting on field image)

Citronophila erastus.jpeg
Citronophila erastus.jpeg

Genus Toxochitona

A small Afrotropical genus comprising four species, with one being recorded at Semuliki: Toxochitona sankuru. All four species have been recorded within Uganda, but only T. gerda is likely to be added to the Semuliki species list, having been recorded in the neighbouring Ituri Forest in the DRC.

Toxochitona sankuru (waiting on field image)

Genus Mimacraea

Another Afrotropical genus comprising 20 species, four being recorded at Semuliki: Mimacraea landbecki, M. krausei, M. telloides and M. fulvaria (Libert, 2000). This comprises 80% of the five species recorded in Uganda. The Butterflies of Semuliki (Forbes, 2018) only lists two species being recorded at Semuliki (M. landbecki and M. krausei). The two additional records: M. telloides and M. fulvaria are listed in the website page 'Species Records and Additions'. 

Mimacraea krausei (2)-ink.jpeg
Mimacraea krausei (3)-ink.jpeg
Mimacraea krausei.jpeg

Mimacraea krausei (male, sexes similar)

Mimacraea krausei (variation,male upperside)

Mimacraea krausei.jpeg

Pinned images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Mimacraea krausei (variation,male underside)

Mimacraea landbecki, M. fulvaria and M. telloides (waiting on field images)

Mimeresia drucei (male, upper and underside)

Genus Mimeresia

A small Afrotropical genus comprising 13 species, two so far being recorded at Semuliki: Mimeresia drucei and M. moreelsi. Seven species have been recorded in Uganda and seven recorded from the Ituri Forest in the DRC, so a group that is likely under-recorded at Semuliki. 

Mimeresia moreelsi (4)-ink (1).jpeg

Mimeresia moreelsi (waiting on field image)

Tribe Epitolini

A large tribe containing 20 genera from the Afrotropical region. Records from eight genera have been recorded to date although this will be quite an under estimation. This is in comparison to 18 of the 20 genera having species being recorded so far in the Ituri Forest and the Semliki Valley of the DRC.

Genus Epitola

A small Afrotropical genus comprising five species, two being recorded at Semuliki: Epitola urania and E. uranoides. Both these species have also been recorded from the Ituri Forest in the DRC. The other three species are found in the west of the continent.

Epitola uranoides.jpeg
Epitola uranoides.jpeg

Epitola uranoides (male, upper and underside)

Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Epitola urania (waiting on field image)

Genus Cerautola

An Afrotropical genus comprising 15 species, eight being recorded in Uganda and three recorded at Semuliki: Cerautola mittoni, C. subargenta and C. crowleyi. Another Lycaenidae genus that is more than likely under-represented with seven species being recorded within the adjoining Ituri Forest and the Semliki Valley of the DRC.

Cerautola mittoni, C. subargenta  and C. crowleyi (waiting on field images)

Genus Geritola

An Afrotropical genus confined to the forest equatorial zone. It comprises 20 species, seven being recorded in Uganda and four recorded at Semuliki: Geritola cynaea, G. dubia, G. liana and G. subargenta. The latter three species are additional to the single Geritola species (Geritola cyanea) recorded in the published checklist. Three of theSemuliki recorded species (C. cyanea, C. liana and C. dubia) have also been recorded in the Ituri Forest along with G. zelica and G. gerina and with targeted sampling both these species are more than likely present at Semuliki too. A myrmecophilous genus where these butterfly species develop a mutualistic association with ants from the genus Crematogaster.

Geritola subargenta (1).jpeg
Geritola subargenta (2).jpeg
Geritola subargenta (3).jpeg

Geritola subargentea (male, upper and underside)

Geritola subargentea  (female, upperside)

Geritola subargenta (4).jpeg

G. subargentea images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Geritola subargentea  (female, underside)

Geritola cynaea, G. dubia  and G. liana (waiting on field images)

Genus Stempfferia

An Afrotropical genus comprising 51 species, 12 being recorded in Uganda with eight at Semuliki. This is six more than documented in Forbes (2018) these being: Stempfferia badura, S. cercene, S. ciconia, S. congoana, S. insulana and S. sylviae. In contrast 15 species have been recorded within the Ituri Forest and the DRC Semliki Valley suggesting that this genus is under-represented at Semuliki. Future sampling should concentrate on this genus along with other under-recorded Lycaenidae genera.  

Stempfferia cecercenoides, S. tumentia, S. badura, S. cercene, S. ciconia, S. congoana, S. insulana and S. sylviae.(waiting on field images)

Genus Cephetola

An Afrotropical genus comprising 69 species, 24 being recorded in Uganda with 10 at Semuliki. This is eight more than documented in Forbes (2018) these being: Cephetola entebbeana, C. cephenoides, C. maculata, C. viridana, C. orientalis, C. kamengensis, C. mpangensis and C. dolorosa. In contrast 21 species have been recorded within the Ituri Forest and the DRC Semliki Valley again suggesting that this genus is under-represented at Semuliki. Future sampling should concentrate on this genus along with other under-recorded Lycaenidae genera.  

Cephetola bwamba, C. pinodes, C. entebbeana, C. cephenoides, C. maculata, C. viridana, C. orientalis, C. kamengensis, C. mpangensis and C. dolorosa (waiting on field images)

Genus Epitolina

A small Afrotropical genus comprising only five species. Three species have been recorded from Uganda, but so far only two have been recorded at Semuliki. It is more than likely, with targeted sampling, the additional Uganda recorded species: E. catori, also recorded by Ducarme (2018) as being present in the Ituri Forest and the DRC Semliki Valley should also be present in the park. 

Epitolina melissa.jpeg
Epitolina melissa.jpeg

Epitolina melissa (male, upper and underside)

Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Epitolina dispar (waiting on field image)

Pinned images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Genus Phytala

An Afrotropical genus comprising one species, Phytala elais

Phytala elais.jpeg
Phytala elais.jpeg

Phytala elais (male, upper and underside)

Phytala elais.jpeg

Phytala elais (female, upperside)

Phytala elais.jpeg

Phytala elais (female, underside)

Genus Hewitsonia

An Afrotropical genus comprising 15 species, four being recorded at Semuliki, 80% of the Ugandan total. Only three were listed in the Semuliki butterfly checklist, the missing record being Hewitsonia kuehnei. .

Hewitsonia intermedia.jpeg
Hewitsonia intermedia.jpeg

Hewitsonia intermedia (male, upper and underside)

H intermediaM (2)d.jpeg
H intermediaM (1)c.jpeg

Hewitsonia intermedia (male, upperside)

Hewitsonia intermedia (male, underside)

H intermediaF (1)a.jpeg
H intermediaF (2)b.jpeg

Hewitsonia intermedia (female, upper and underside)

Pinned images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Hewitsonia inexpecta.jpeg
Hewitsonia inexpecta.jpeg

Hewitsonia inexpecta (male, upper and underside)

Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Hewitsonia ugandae.jpeg
Hewitsonia ugandae.jpeg
Hewitsonia ugandae.jpeg

Hewitsonia ugandae (male, upper and underside)

Hewitsonia ugandae (female, upperside)

Hewitsonia ugandae.jpeg

Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Hewitsonia ugandae (female, underside)

Hewitsonia kuehnei (waiting on field image)

Powellana cottoni (waiting on field image)

Genus Powellana

An Afrotropical monotypic genus comprising the species Powellana cottoni. Missing from the Semuliki checklist but recorded from Semuliki and also from the Ituri Forest and the Semliki Valley of the DRC.

Subfamily Miletinae

A subfamily with global representation, except within the Neotropics.  Currently systematics describe four tribes (Lachnocnemini,

Spalgini,  Miletini and  Liphyrini) with representative genera from the Afrotropics within each tribe. Larvae and adults have an ant association.

Tribe Lachnocnemini

This tribe contains two Afrotropical genera with one containing species recorded at Semuliki, Lachnocnema. The other genus, Thestor is confined to the southern states of Africa and is not found in Uganda. 

Genus Lachnocnema

A large Afrotropical genus comprising 36 species. 16 species have been recorded in Uganda and 12 species from the Ituri Forest and the DRC Semliki Valley. Only one has been recorded at Semuliki: L. exiguus. The lack of records for this genus suggests an under-representation and with targeted sampling further species will be identified. 

Lachnocnema exiguus (waiting on field image)

Tribe Spalgini

Of the four genera ascribed to this tribe, the genus Spalgis is the only one of the four found within the Afrotropical region. Species within this genus are also found within the Oriental region although the three Afrotropical species do not extend outwith the Afrotropical region.

Genus Spalgis

A small Afrotropical genus comprising three species, two recorded in Uganda and one from Semuliki: S. jacksoni. The other species recorded from Uganda, S. lemolea has been recorded from Bugoma Central Forest Reserve around 120 km north-east of Semuliki and within the Ituri Forest and the DRC Semliki Valley. 

Spalgis jacksoni (waiting on field image)

Tribe Miletini

Of the five genera ascribed to this tribe, only one genus, Megalopalpus,  is found within the Afrotropical region.

Genus Megalopalpus

A small Afrotropical genus comprising four species, three recorded in Uganda with all three found at Semuliki. 

Megalopalpus zymna.jpeg
Megalopalpus zymna.jpeg

​ Megalopalpus zymna (sexes similar)

Megalopalpus metaleucus and M. simplex (waiting on field images)

Subfamily Aphnaeienae

A subfamily with global representation.  Currently systematics describe 11 species groups and this includes 17 genera from the Afrotropical region. 

Genus Aphnaeus

A large Afrotropical genus comprising 37 species designated to 11 species groups. Nine species have been recorded in Uganda but to date only one at Semuliki. Although eight species have been recorded within the Ituri Forest of the DRC.

Aphnaeus orcas.jpeg
Aphnaeus orcas.jpeg

​ Aphnaeus orcas (sexes similar)

Genus Pseudaletis

An Afrotropical genus comprising 27 species, four being recorded in Uganda and one recorded at Semuliki: Pseudaletis antimachus. 10 species have been recorded from the Ituri Forest of the DRC and targeted sampling should identify further species at Semuliki. The larvae are carniverous feeding on Crematogaster ants. .

Pseudaletis antimachus (waiting on field image)

Subfamily Polyommatinae

A subfamily divided loosely into four tribes with two having Afrotropical species: Lycaenesthini and Polyommatini.  

Tribe Lycaenesthini

Containing five Afrotropical genera, Anthene, Cupidesthes, Neurellipes, Triclema and Monile.

Genus Anthene

A largely Afrotropical genus comprising 72 species and split into a number of subgenera. 33 species have been recorded from Uganda and 12 from Semuliki: Anthene larydas, A. crawshayi, A. ligures, A. sylvanus, A. rubricinctus, A. ituria, A. princeps, A. liodes, A. linulataA. akoae, A. irumia and A. eliasi.  The latter four were omitted from the Semuliki species checklist.

Anthene ituria (female, underside)

Image by tapaculo99 (original posted on inaturalist)

Further 11 species (waiting on field images)

Genus Neurellipes

An Afrotropical genus comprising 49 species divided into four species groups. 10 species have been recorded from Uganda and seven from Semuliki: Neurellipes fulvimacula, N. kampala, N. scintillula, N. makala, N. zenkeri, N. lachares and N. onias. The latter four were omitted from the Semuliki species checklist and are now recorded in the 'Species records and additions' tab. N. leptines which has been tentatively identified - see image below, has been recorded in the Ituri Forest so its presence within Semuliki is probable. This species has not been added to the species list until identification has been confirmed.

Neurellipes scintillula.jpg
Anthene scintillulaB.jpeg

Neurellipes scintillula (male, upper and underside)

Neurellipes onias.jpeg

Neurellipes onias (underside, sexes similar)

Neurellippes leptines.jpeg

Neurellipes leptines - identification requires confirmation (underside, sexes similar)

Neurellipes kampala.jpeg
Neurellipes kampala.jpeg

Neurellipes kampala (male, upper and underside)

Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Neurellipes fulvimacula, N. makala, N. zenkeri and N. lachares (waiting on field images)

Genus Triclema

An Afrotropical genus comprising 23 species divided into two species groups. Nine species have been recorded in Uganda and six from Semuliki: Triclema staudingeri, T. phoenicis, T. inconspicua, T. obsoleta, T. rufoplagata and T. lamias. The latter three were omitted from the Semuliki species checklist and are now added as an addition to the species total in the 'Species records and additions' tab.

Triclema inconspicua.jpeg
Triclema inconspicua.jpeg
Triclema inconspicua.jpeg

Triclema inconspicua (male, underside)

Triclema inconspicua (male, upper and underside)

Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Triclema staudingeri, T. phoenicis, T. obsoleta, T. rufoplagata and T. lamias (waiting on field images)

Tribe Polyommatini

This tribe is split into a number of subtribes which will not be identified here. The genus Cupidopsis  has been placed within the tribe Polyommatini but has yet to be taxonomically defined within this group 

Genus Cupidopsis

A small Afrotropical genus comprising two species. Both species have been recorded in Uganda and also from the Ituri Forest and DRC Semliki Valley (Cupidopsis cissus) and DRC Semliki Valley (C. jobates). Only C. cissus has been recorded from Semuliki. 

Cupidopsis cissus (waiting on field image)

Genus Pseudonacaduba

Another small Afrotropical genus comprising two species, both have been recorded from Semuliki.

Pseudonacaduba aethiops and P. sichela (waiting on field images)

Genus Uranothauma

An Afrotropical genus comprising 23 species with eight being recorded in Uganda. Surprisingly, only two species have been recorded from Semuliki, U. cyara and U. falkensteinii. This is in contrast to the six species recorded from the Ituri Forest and the DRC Semliki Valley (all also found in Uganda, including U. cyara and U. falkensteinii). 

Uranothauma cyara and U. falkensteinii  (waiting on field images)

Genus Cacyreus

A naturally occurring Afrotropical genus comprising nine species, four being recorded in Uganda. Two species have been recorded from Semuliki: C. lingeus and C. audeoudi. In the DRC Semliki Valley C. fracta is present and this species should be found at Semuliki with similar habitat  present as to those in the DRC. 

Cacyreus audeoudi.jpeg

Cacyreus audeoudi (undersides sexes similar, uppersides different)

Image by Pat Bulman (original posted on inaturalist)

Cacyreus lingeus  (waiting on field image)

Genus Leptotes

A genus of 30 species with a Neotropical and Australasian component, of which 16 species are from the Afrotropical region. Six species have been recorded from Uganda and two so far from Semuliki: L. pirithous and L. marginalis. Two species not recorded from Semuliki but recorded from the Ituri Forest and the DRC Semliki Valley are L. jeanneli and L. babaulti. To identify these two species genitalia dissection is required.

Leptotes.jpeg

Leptotes spp. (underside)

Genus Tuxentius

An Afrotropical genus comprising 11 species, four being recorded in Uganda but only one at Semuliki: Tuxentius margaritaceus.

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Tuxentius margaritaceus (male, underside)

Image by clicque (original posted on inaturalist)

Genus Zizeeria

A genus comprising only one species and recorded from Semuliki: Zizeeria knysna. This species extends into the Australasian and Palearctic regions.

Zizeeria knysna (waiting on field image)

Genus Zizula

A genus comprising two species, one occurring within the Afrotropical region and also recorded at Semuliki: Zizula hylax.

Zizula hylax (waiting on field image)

Genus Azanus

A genus comprising 11 species, six occurring in Uganda and four recorded at Semuliki: Azanus isis, A. mirza, A. moriqua and A. natalensis. The species A. jesous is a widespread savannah butterfly, recorded from the Ituri Forest and the DRC Semliki Valley and so it would be unusual not to find this species at Semuliki.

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Azanus natalensis (underside, sexes similar)

Azanus mirza.jpeg

Azanus mirza (male, underside)

Azanus isis and A. moriqua (waiting on field images)

Genus Eicochrysops

An Afrotropical genus comprising 15 species, five occurring in Uganda but only one recorded at Semuliki: Eicochrysops hippocrates. The same species is the only record from the genus recorded from the Ituri Forest and DRC Semliki Valley.

Eicochrysops hippocrates (waiting on field image)

Genus Euchrysops

A predominantly Afrotropical genus comprising 27 species, 13 occurring in Uganda but only two recorded at Semuliki: Euchrysops osiris and E. barkeri.

Euchrysops barkeri and E. osiris (waiting on field images)

Genus Thermoniphas

An Afrotropical genus containing16 species, eight occurring in Uganda with four recorded at Semuliki: Thermoniphas alberici, T. distincta, T. fontainei and T. togara (the latter not recorded in the published checklist (Forbes, 2018). 

Thermoniphas alberici.jpeg
Thermoniphas alberici.jpeg

Thermoniphas alberici (undersides)

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Thermoniphas togara (underside)

Thermoniphas distincta and T. fontainei (waiting on field images)

Genus Oboronia

An Afrotropical genus containing seven species, five occurring in Uganda with four recorded at Semuliki: Oboronia guessfeldti, O. pseudopunctatusO. punctatus and O. ornata (a new record). There is a record of O. albicosta being recorded in the Semliki Valley (Williams, 2021 - genus Oboronia), but no reference to the record. O. albicosta was not recorded within the Ituri Forest or DRC Semliki Valley (Ducarme, 2018) but only in the Mitumba Mountains, so this species record for Semuliki appears unlikely. There are a number of morphological description differences to distinguish O. punctatus and O. pseudopunctatus. The most discernible trait difference  appears to be as described by Vande weghe (2010) - 'On both wings the black marginal border is narrower'.

Oboronia guessfeldti.jpeg
Oboronia guessfeldti.jpeg

Oboronia guessfeldti (upper and underside)

Oboronia guessfeldti.jpeg

Oboronia guessfeldti (underside - showing yellow basal underside)

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Oboronia ornata (underside, showing no tail)

Oboronia punctatus.jpeg
Oboronia punctatus.jpeg

Oboronia punctatus (upper and underside)

Oboronia pseudopunctatus.jpeg

Oboronia pseudopunctatus (underside)

Subfamily Theclinae

A global subfamily divided into a number of tribes, with many having Afrotropical species representatives although a detailed phylogenetic consensus has yet to be produced. The tribes detailed are referenced from Williams (2016).

Tribe Amblypodiini

Containing only one Afrotropical genus; Myrina which comprises three species Myrina sharpei, M. silenus and M.dermaptera .

Genus Myrina

All three have been recorded in Uganda with one so far being recorded at Semuliki; M. sharpei. The species M. silenus has been recorded in Fort Portal (Uganda), Ituri Forest and the Semliki Valley of the DRC so the absence of a record for Semuliki is unusual. 

Myrina sharpei (waiting on field image)

Tribe Iolaini

Containing three Afrotropical genera: Iolaus, Stugeta and Etesiolaus

Genus Iolaus

An extensive Afrotropical genus containing 130 species, 44 species having been recorded in Uganda. To date, five species have been recorded at Semuliki: Iolaus bellina, I. creta, I. mongiro and I. neavei. This is three more than were identified in the Semuliki species list (Forbes, 2018), I. mongiro, I. creta and I. neavei  being the three additional records (Williams, 2023).

Iolaus bellina, I. mongiro, I. pollux, I. neavei and I. creta (waiting on field images)

Tribe Hypolycaenini

Containing three Afrotropical genera: Hypolycaena, Hemiolaus and Leptomyrina.

Genus Hypolycaena

An extensive genus of 42 species containing Australasian, Indomalayan and Afrotropical species. There are 25 species found in the Afrotropical region, 10 species recorded from Uganda with 4 species recorded from Semuliki: Hypolycaena antifaunas, H. hatita, H. nigra and H. philippus. All Semuliki species have been recorded from the DRC Ituri Forest while a further four species H. naara, H. liara, H. lebona and H. kadiskos have been recorded in the Ituri but not at Semuliki. Targeted sampling for these species would likely also record these species from Semuliki.

Hypolycaena phillipus.jpeg

Hypolycaena philippus (underside)

Hypolyceana nigra.jpeg
Hypolyceana nigra.jpeg

Hypolycaena nigra (female, upper and underside)

Hypolycaena nigra.jpeg
Hypolycaena nigra.jpeg
Hypolycaena nigra.jpeg

Hypolycaena nigra (male, upperside)

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Hypolycaena nigra (male, underside)

Hypolycaena nigra (female, upper and underside)

Hypolycaena antifaunas.jpeg
Hypolycaena antifaunas.jpeg

Hypolycaena antifaunus (male, upper and underside)

Hypolycaena antifaunas.jpeg

Hypolycaena antifaunus (female, upperside)

Hypolycaena antifaunas.jpeg

Hypolycaena antifaunus (female, underside)

Hypolycaena hatita.jpeg
Hypolycaena hatita.jpeg
Hypolycaena hatita.jpeg

Hypolycaena hatita (male, upper and underside)

Hypolycaena hatita (female, upperside)

Hypolycaena hatita.jpeg

All pinned Images by Harald Selb (Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Hypolycaena hatita (female, underside)

Hypolycaena philippus (waiting on field image)

Tribe Oxylidini

Containing two Afrotropical genera: Oxylides and Syrmoptera. There have been no records of Genus Syrmpotera within Uganda.

Genus Oxylides

A small genus containing seven species, two recorded in Uganda and both found at Semuliki: O. albata and O. feminina

Oxylides albata.feminina.jpeg
Oxylides albata.jpeg
Oxylides albata.jpeg

Oxylides (albata or feminina - species underside is identical)

Oxylides albata (male, upper and underside)

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Oxylides albata (female, upperside)

Oxylides albata.jpeg

Oxylides albata (female, underside)

Pinned images by Harald Selb

(Harald Selb, Semuliki National Park Collection)

Oxylides feminina.jpeg
Oxylides feminina.jpeg

Oxylides feminina (male, upper and underside)

Tribe Deudorigini

Containing among Indomalayan, Palearctic and Australasian genera, five Afrotropical genera: DeudorixCapys, Hypomyrina, Paradeudorix and Pilodeudorix. Currently records for this tribe are severely under-represented at Semuliki. Records for species of the genus Deudorix for example amount to just two while there have been seven species records from the DRC Ituri Forest and DRC Semliki Valley (Ducarme, 2018).

Genus Deudorix

An Afrotropical  genus containing 23 species, 11 described from Uganda with two recorded at Semuliki: D. antalus  and D. odana (Libert, 2004). This adds D. odana to the only one recorded from the species list for Semuliki (Forbes, 2018).

Deudorix antalus and D. odana (waiting on field images)

Genus Hypomyrina

An Afrotropical  genus containing four species, with all being present in Uganda and two being recorded from Semuliki: H. nomenia and H. fournierae. Both species are additions to what had previously been an unrecorded genus at Semuliki, not detailed in the published species list (Forbes, 2018).

Hypomyrina nomenia and H. fournierae (waiting on field images)

Genus Paradeudorix

An Afrotropical  genus containing 13 species, with four being recorded from Uganda and one being recorded from Semuliki: P. canescens, although this was not recorded in Forbes (2018). Six species have been recorded in the adjacent Ituri Forest of the DRC (Ducarme, 2018), so species records are likely to be under-represented. Targeted sampling would likely add to species records for this genus.

Paradeudorix canescens (waiting on field image)

Genus Pilodeudorix

An Afrotropical  genus containing 50 species, with 23 being recorded from Uganda and eight being recorded from Semuliki: P. congoana, P. anetia, P. mera, P. otraeda, P. dimitris, P. bwamba, P. violetta and P. camerona. All eight species were not recorded in the Semuliki checklist of Forbes (2018). There have been 25 species recorded from the DRC Ituri Forest (Ducarme, 2018) adjacent to Semuliki, including the eight species from Semuliki. Targeted sampling will increase species records for this genus at Semuliki.

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Pilodeudorix sp. (underside)

Pilodeudorix congoana, P. anetia, P. mera, P. otraeda, P. dimitris, P. bwamba, P. violetta and P. camerona (waiting on field images)

Specific genus site links, references and bibliography:

Special thanks to Harald Selb for providing images of his Lycaenidae specimens from Semuliki National Park and also providing image identification.

 

Boyle, J.H. et al., (2015). Phylogeny of the Aphnaeinae: myrmecophilous African butterflies with carnivorous and herbivorous life histories. Systematic Entomology 40, pp. 169–182.

Espeland, M. et al., (2023). Rapid radiation of ant parasitic butterflies during the Miocene aridification of Africa. Ecology and Evolution 13 (5).

Fiedler, K. (1998). Lycaenid-ant interactions of the Maculinea type: Tracing their historical roots in a comparative framework. Journal of Insect Conservation 2, pp. 3–14.

Fielder, K., (2021). The ant associates of Lycaenidae butterfly caterpillars – revisited. Nota Lepidopterologica 44: pp. 159–174.

Libert, M., (2000). Revision of the genus Epitola Westwood, Hypophytala Clench and Stempfferia Jackson and a description of three new genera (Lepidoptera, Lycaenidae). Lambillionea.

 

Libert, M., (2000). Revision of the genus Mimacraea Butler (Lepidoptera, Lycaenidae). Lambillionea.

Libert, M., (2004). Revision of the African genus Deudorix Hewitson (Lepidoptera, Lycaenidae). Lambillionea.

Libert, M., (2005). Revision of the genus Telipna Aurivillius (Lepidoptera, Lycaenidae). Lambillionea

Vande weghe, G., (2010). Papillons du Gabon. Wildlife Conservation Society.

Williams, M.W., (2023). Classification of the Afrotropical butterflies to generic level. Metamorphosis 26, pp 102-108.

Williams, M.W., (2023). Genus Iolaus. Metamorphosis.

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