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Calephelis laverna, Mount Saint Benedict, Trinidad, 1 July 2002 Ref #:
The family Riodinidae is made up of approximately 1300 species divided into three
subfamilies. Most of these butterflies are tropical and many have shiny, metallic
looking bands on their wings which give them their common name of metalmarks. Some
of the Neotropical species are outrageously colored with reflective scales of every
color and hue. The family is made up of three subfamilies; the Euselasiini and Riodininae
which are from the New World, and the Nemeobiinae from the Old World. The Riodinids
are small to medium in size. The males have front legs that are reduced and not
used for walking, whereas the females have three pairs of walking legs. Some species
perch with wings open, some with wings closed and some with their wings at an angle.
Many will perch upside down under a leaf and many species live high in the tropical
canopy and are very poorly understood.
Calephelis laverna belongs to the subfamily Riodininae. It can be found from southern
Mexico south to Brazil and Trinidad. It inhabits the forest understory and like
others in this group is commonly seen in light gaps in the forest. It is also found
along forest edges.
The lifecycle of this species is not well documented, but is probably similar to
others in the same genus such as the Fatal Metalmark.