Genus Megisto in Florida and the Taxonomic Status of Megisto viola (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae: Satyrinae).

P. M. Catling, J. V. Calhoun


Megisto cymela (Cramer) and M. c. viola (Maynard) were studied to evaluate variation and subspeciation, using 274 specimens from Florida (239 from the peninsula and 65 from the panhandle) and 163 from the northern range limits in Ontario and Quebec. The few specimens suggesting multiple broods in Florida were either misidentified or probably mislabelled. The study sample and additional observations suggest a single flight period from late February to late April in the peninsula, late February to mid-June in the panhandle, and late May and June at the northern range limit in Canada. There are no constant morphological characteristics within the subspecific blend zone in northern Florida to suggest more than one species, but recognition of M. c. viola as a subspecies in peninsular Florida appears valid. Habitats and flight periods are also discussed.


Arkansas; Canada; cline; development; distribution; evolution; flight period; Georgia; Hermeuptychia; Louisiana; Nearctic; North America; Ontario; Pennsylvania; Quebec; symmpatry; USA; voltinism

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