N A T U R K U N D L I C H E S   I N F O R M A T I O N S S Y S T E M

Eurytides orabilis (Butler, 1872)

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Papilio orabilis Butler, 1872: 84
Type locality: Costa Rica, Cartago
Type: Syntype: Costa Rica, Cartago, leg. van Patten, coll. Druce, in coll. NHM, London (Häuser et al. 2005)

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
Papilio orabilis isocharis Rothschild & Jordan, 1906: 738. Type locality: Colombia, Juntas, Rio Dagna. Subspecies ?

Thick-edged Kite-Swallowtail


E. orabilis isocharis      
Picture from: Seitz 1924
Detailed view

Description of adults: Wingspan 46-56 mm (wikipedia 2012).
E. orabilis orabilis: ". The black oblique discal band of the hindwing not marked on the upperside, only shining through from below. Discal spot R1—R2 of forewing, upperside, usually absent, oblique black median band often not reaching M2, the portion between cell and M2 being shaded with greenish white, especially often in Costa Rica specimens." (Rothschild & Jordan 1906).
E. orabilis isocharis: ". Upperside.-Forewing: black median band always extending to M2; distal border a little wider than in P. o. orabilis; greenish white discal spot R1—R2 always present. Hindwing: black distal border wider than in the preceding form, sending out obliquely forward a spur corresponding to the oblique band of the underside, the spur not reaching beyond SC2 (a similar spur found in P. iphitas, dolicaon, etc.). Underside.—The pale postdiscal band situated in the brown-black distal border narrower than in the Central American subspecies. Hindwing: submarginal innules R2—M1 rather larger. Clayish streaks of abdomen on the whole narrower than in P. o. orabilis." (Rothschild & Jordan 1906).


Following Rothschild & Jordan (1906) and Häuser et al. (2005), the species is distributed from Ecuador and Colombia northwards to Costa Rica.


Males often fly above the tree canopy, while females fly along forest edges and streams. Males also are found puddling on wet sand near the edges of streams. Hernandia didymantha and Cordia megalantha are reported as nectar sources (Chacon 2001, wikipedia 2012).

Stages in development:

Egg. The white eggs are laid singly on the leaves of Guatteria oliviformis and Guatteria tonduzii (Chacon 2001).

Larva. The first instars are gray-brown, with a saddle on the abdominal segments. The head is black, the anal plate is yellow-green. The fifth instar of the larva is green with black spots on the thoracic segments. The first two and last three abdominal segments are also spotted with black. The osmeterium is yellow (Chacon 2001, wikipedia 2012).


Genitalia: "Ventral process of clasper much larger than in P. serville and columbus, central ridge of harpe wider, proximal ventral edge of harpe not produced basad." (Rothschild & Jordan 1906).


". Similar in appearance to P. serville and columbus Kollar (1850, non Hew. 1851), but easily recognised by the club of the antenna being black, seldom slightly tawny, by the black median band of the forewing stopping short at or before M2, not joining the distal black border, the cell of the forewing being proportionately longer, the red spot M1—M2 of the hindwing being well marked above and below, etc." (Rothschild & Jordan 1906).

Worth knowing:


Butler, A. G. 1872. Descriptions of new Butterflies from Costa Rica. Cistula entomologica I: 72-118.
Chacon, I. 2001. Eurytides orabilis orabilis (Butler), 1872 (in Spanish). Species of Costa Rica. Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad. http://darnis.inbio.ac.cr/ubisen/FMPro?-DB=UBIPUB.fp3&-lay=WebAll&-error=norec.html&-Format=detail.html&-Op=eq&id=3534&-Find. [online 19 October 2012].
Häuser, C. L., J. Holstein & A. Steiner 2005. The Global Butterfly Information System. http://www.globis.insects-online.de. Last updated 14.04.2011 [online 29 August 2012].
Rothschild, W. & K. Jordan 1906. A Revision of the American Papilios. Novitates Zoologicae XIII: 411-752, pl. IV-IX.
Wikipedia contributors 2012. Eurytides orabilis, Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 22 August 2012, 18:38 UTC, [online 19 October 2012].

Publication data:

Kurz Michael: 2012.09.30
Kurz Michael: 2012.10.22
not reviewed