Pyrrhogyra otolais (Tropical Brushfoot sp.)


The genus Pyrrhogyra includes 6 known species, all marked on the underside with large white areas enclosed within rings that are formed from narrow red lines.
An unusual and notable feature is that the butterflies also have red eyes.
All Pyrrhogyra species are very similar in appearance.
They can be distinguished from one another by carefully examining the markings around the underside hindwing margins and by comparing the size and shape of the greenish-white areas on the dark brown uppersides.
Pyrrhogyra otolais breeds in sub-tropical and tropical forest at altitudes between sea level and 800m.
If disturbed the butterflies fly off rapidly, and hide upside-down beneath leaves (like on the 2nd photo) on bushes or young saplings, usually no more than a metre from the ground.
Pyrrhogyra otolais is found from Mexico to Bolivia.
This is the subspecies Pyrrhogyra otolais otolais which occurs in Mexico and south to Panama.

Andrew Neild, author of The Butterflies of Venezuela and a recognized authority on Neotropical butterflies, helped me identifying this species.

Los Tarrales Natural Reserve, Patulul, Suchitepequez, Guatemala, 17 January 2020

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