Ecuador: Macroglossini

Ecuador: Macroglossini
Hyles, Phanoxyla and Xylophanes

Xylophanes docilis, San Isidro, Napo, Ecuador,
April 6, 2011, courtesy of Les Catchick.

This checklist will become more refined on a species by species basis as images and information are sent to me. If you would like to assist in the development of this worldwide Sphingidae data/image base, please send info and images to Bill Oehlke.

Since I am often asked to identify species from digital images, and since those images frequently show the moths at rest with the hindwings and abdomen hidden, I have arranged the images in accordance with my perception of forewing and thoracic characters: predominent markings, shape, colour. I have also included information about size, and most often display the moths in spread position as those same abdominal and hindwing features are often very useful when available.

Females often have a wing shape or pattern that differs from the males. I hope someday to also have a thumbnail checklist for the females.

Hyles annei

Hyles lineata

Hyles lineata has white streaks, absent on annei, on the thorax between white inner and outer edges of tegulae. Six prominent white lines/streaks, subparallel to forewing inner margin, clearly distinguish H. lineata. H. annei may be more restricted in range: western.

Phanoxyla hystrix

Thorax: dark brown tegulae, except for anubus; dark brown head.
Dark brown, dark green, distinct, apical, transverse post median line.
Dark brown shading in cell area, not so pronounced in anubus.

Xylophanes acrus
Fw o. m. concave for upper 1/3.
S-shaped, prominent pml meets inner margin close to body.
Three, thin but distinct, very crenulated, inner pm lines.
Subterminal/terminal areas darker than in other species.
Double row of abdominal dots; no abdominal midline.

Greenish shades fade to brown.

Xylophanes docilis
Fw o. m. almost straight.
Almost straight, prominent pml meets i. m. close to body.
Three very weak slightly crenulated inner pm lines.
Thin, distinct, dentate sbtrmnl line, greenish inner shading.
Dark brown stripe down middle of abdomen.

Greenish shades fade to brown.
San Isidro, Napo, 1750m, LC

Xylophanes anubus anubus
Xylophanes anubus is similar in fw pattern to several species in this group, especially X. docilis, but note absence of dark brown tegulae, which are instead concolorous with rest of thorax and abdomen. Also note absence of dark line down center of abdomen. Fw pml of anubus is thinner than in docilis, and it also meets i. m. closer to anal angle.

Xylophanes cyrene
Fw o. m. concave below apex.
Dominant pm line meets inner margin near midpoint.
Inner post median lines are very weak.
Subterminal line vestigial, without greenish inner shading.
Double row of abdominal dots; no abdominal midline.
Always brownish, never green

Xylophanes cosmius
Fw o.m. very convex lower 2/3
Fw pml runs out to apex, meets inner margni near midpoint.
Inner pmls straight, vestigial.
Subterminal line delineated (upper) by white sales, (lower) by dark scales.
No abdominal dots, no abdominal midline.
Greenish shades fade to brown.

Xylophanes aglaor
Darker, more contrastingly patterned than libya.
Tegulae: dark brown inner edge.
All five postmedian lines (including doubled first) generally equal in thickness, sometimes fourth or fifth line slightly heavier.
Hw median band narrower than libya, with consequently broader marginal band.
Fw underside: lunate subapical spot; marginal band with basal dark patch more extensive than libya, covering more than half the wing.

Xylophanes libya
Fw: first pml double; fourth pml heavier than others.
Usually a black dot in discal cell opposite CuA2.
Black subapical costal spot often present.
Hw: dark brown or black; median band pale orange-pink, parallel sided along most of length, concave proximally between veins M2 and CuA2, not reaching apex or costal margin (sometimes stopping at M1); black marginal band broadest between M2 and CuA2, often distinctly dentate near M2.
Fw and Hw underside: more black and brown than loelia.

Xylophanes loelia
Intermediate between X. libya and X. neoptolemus, but has a closer resemblance to the latter. The hindwing of X. loelia is narrower than in X. libya. Compared to X. libya, this species lacks black dot in discal cell opposite CuA2, and subapical costal dot is only rarely indicated. Hw upperside with median band redder than in X. libya but paler than in X. neoptolemus, reaching costal margin and with an irregular inner edge; marginal band more even than in X. libya, narrow, sharply defined, not dentate near M2.

Xylophanes ceratomioides
Fw o.m. slightly scalloped.
Abdomen: three narrow, longitudinal lines; outer lines posteriorly divergent and expanded into triangular spots.
Costa: conspicuous subapical, apical black spots, largest subapical spot triangular with inner point directed basally.
Median area running out to apex: pale brown with scattered black scales on veins; discal spot small, black.
First four pm lines dissipate preapically before reaching costa, weak fifth line runs to apex. First line slightly sinuate.
Second-fourth lines very scalloped near inner margin.
Oblique postmedian band dark with sinuate black lines within it, inner edge slightly undulate, outer edge deeply excavate from CuA2 to just above M3, forming a pale brown, oval patch; marginal area with black vein spots.

Xylophanes guianensis
Fw o. m. quite scalloped.
Outer abdominal lines not posteriorly divergent.
Fw costa: several conspicuous subapical and apical black spots, more proximate than ceratomioides, the largest subapical spot quadrate.
Pm lines clearly visible within the postmedian area, almost straight, except toward inner edge of wing (not scalloped as in ceratomioides) Most distal antemedian line and most basal postmedian line meet on inner edge of forewing upperside; ; pale brown excavated area on outer margin of postmedian band narrow (more so than in Xylophanes xylobotes), rectangular and not well defined due to the visible presence within it of the third, fourth and fifth postmedian lines. Pale bands of hindwing upperside intermediate in coloration between those of Xylophanes ceratomioides and Xylophanes xylobotes.

Xylophanes th. thyelia
Xylophanes thyelia has visible characters making it similar to members of the Xylophanes ceratomioides group, but it is a much smaller species.
The head has a dark longitudinal line, bordered ventrally with buff, above the antenna. The tegula have a dark brown median line, bordered on each side by a pale grey stripe, irrorated with pale purple.
The abdomen has a brown midline, bordered by narrow grey lines; a brown lateral line present on segments 2-4, bordered ventrally by a pale buff line that continues posteriorly to segment 7.
The forewing upperside is dark brown and buff. There is a short dark line present basal to the first postmedian line, reaching as far as the discal spot. First, second and third postmedian lines arise almost from the wing base and are quite oblique. The first postmedian line reaches to just beyond M1; the second postmedian line reaches Rs4; the third and fourth postmedian lines very narrow and close, sometimes fused for part of their length distally, running from Rs4 to M3, below which they become a diffuse series of minute spots (continuous and distinct below M3 in Xylophanes thyelia salvini).
The area between the second and third postmedian lines, where they overlap, is conspicuously pale. The fifth postmedian line runs from the apex to M3 as a gradually broadening triangular patch. There is an apical area bounded by the costa, fifth postmedian line and Rs4, and the tornal area bounded by M3, the second postmedian line and CuA2, both pale brown and buff, with scattered individual black scales; Rs4, basal to second postmedian line, highlighted with buff over distal half.
The forewing underside has three dark brown or black, parallel and equidistant postmedian lines.
The hindwing upperside is an almost uniform grey-brown. The median band is barely visible. in the male, the hindtibia have long scales dorsally and ventrally, thus appearing very broad and compressed.

Xylophanes xylobotes
Fw o. m. not scalloped.
Outer abdominal lines not posteriorly divergent.
Fw costa: almost clear, more apical black spots almost non-existent.
Inner pm lines dissipate preapically well before reaching costa.
Generally much lighter appearance than ceratomioides or guianensis.
Much reduced buff basal patch.

Xylophanes pyrrhus
CATE Sphingidae indicates this species is similar to Xylophanes thyelia thyelia. However, X. pyrrhus is much larger, and its forewing apex is slightly more elongate and falcate. The forewing discal spot is smaller in pyrrhus, and the third and fourth postmedian lines are very narrow and close, but never fused. These lines continue below M3 as a pair of more diffuse but essentially continuous lines. The fifth postmedian line continues below M3 to the inner margin as a narrower and diffuse line. In thyelia this fifth line is very weak, almost non-existent in its lower half.
Rs4, basal to second postmedian line, is highlighted with buff over its entire length.
The forewing underside is also similar to that of Xylophanes thyelia thyelia, but the most basal of the three dark brown postmedian lines is further from the middle line than that line is from the most distal line, and is slightly divergent from the other two apically.
I also find that the brown subterminal line in pyrrhus continues from the apex to the inner margin, broadening and becoming slightly more diffuse in its lower half. The same line in thyelia disappears as it approaches the inner margin, providing for a relatively large, uniform tan area near the forewing anal angle.

Xylophanes titana

Xylophanes crotonis
Tegulae: no pale median line.
Fws, body: olive-green, fading to brown.
Each side of abdomen with basal yellowish-white lateral patch, extending onto metanotum, posterior of which is black patch and distinct yellow stripe.
dorsal lines vestigial or absent. with a series of oblique lines running from the inner margin to the apex; first and fourth postmedian lines generally stronger than the second, third and fifth, which are equal in intensity to the two submarginal lines. Hindwing upperside black; median band comprising a series of teardrop-shaped pale yellow spots.

Xylophanes rhodochlora
Similar to Xylophanes crotonis but forewing smaller and distinctly shorter and broader, upperside brighter green and pattern simplified. Thorax with grey dorsal stripe, similar to that of Xylophanes aristor. Tegula edged in white along its outer (lateral), but not inner (dorsal), margin (the reverse pattern is found in Xylophanes vagliai); no median line of grey scales. Lateral tufts at posterior edge of metanotum and base of abdomen bright yellow (yellowish-white in Xylophanes crotonis); yellow lateral stripe narrower, shorter and paler than in Xylophanes crotonis, and speckled with orange and brown. Outer spur of midtibia equal to inner. Underside of thorax more orange than in Xylophanes crotonis. Underside of abdomen more pink than in Xylophanes crotonis. Forewing upperside similar to Xylophanes crotonis but only first and fourth postmedian lines conspicuous; first postmedian line straight; all other oblique lines vestigial or absent; discal spot larger. Marginal area of forewing underside dirty grey with a scattering of black scales, very distinct from the brick-red ground colour of the rest of the wing and delineated by a grey line that is toothed on M2 (as in Xylophanes aristor).

X. aristor
Similar to Xylophanes crotonis but immediately distinguishable by the broad grey dorsal stripe on the thorax and abdomen. Most similar to Xylophanes kiefferi but less robust and outer edge of forewing more convex. Differs from Xylophanes crotonis in thorax and abdomen having a broad, grey, dorsal stripe, which is often divided medially by a narrow brown line, and from Xylophanes kiefferi in the olive-green (rather than deep rich brown) upperside of the body. Tegula edged in grey along both its inner (dorsal) and outer (lateral) margins; no median line of grey scales. Forewing upperside similar to Xylophanes kiefferi but ground colour olive-green (rather than deep rich brown) and first and fourth postmedian lines closer together.
Baeza, Napo, April 5, 2011, LC

Xylophanes schwartzi
This species is similar to Xylophanes rhodochlora in the crotonis group, but schwartzi's carmine-red wing undersides from the fw discal cell outwards and the entire hindwing clearly distinguish it. The reddish hue manifest itself elsewhere: the inner margin of the tegulae are edged with a very narrow pink line, the underside of palps, thorax and abdomen are pale pink, and there is a thin pink line running along the dorsal surface of the inner margin from the black tuft at the wing-body juncture to the midpoint of the inner margin. On the olive-green forewing, only the khaki fourth post median line and the small black discal dot are distinct. The hindwing spots in the median band have a powdering of green scales in their lower quarter. The hindwing outer margin is olive-green.

X. kiefferi
Similar to Xylophanes aristor but more robust and outer edge of forewing straighter.
Forewing upperside similar to Xylophanes aristor but ground colour a deep rich brown (rather than olive-green) and first and fourth postmedian lines farther apart.
Forewing underside similar to Xylophanes aristor but brown; basal area dark brown grey and less extensive, so that first postmedian line remains visible to the inner margin; second postmedian line heavier, sinuate and continuous, reaching the inner margin; dark marginal area closer to postmedian area, reaching the third one (represented by vein dots), delineated by a grey line that is toothed between M2 and M3 (as in Xylophanes vagliai) apical area, between costa and Rs4 beyond most distal costal dark spot, shorter, brighter yellow.
Anal area of hindwing underside bright yellow (whitish in Xylophanes aristor).

Xylophanes rothschildi
6.28 - 7.15 cm
Fw dark green with bluish tint; basally deeper olive-green.
Small concolourous oval patch runs longitudinally from small, round, black discal spot to dark green oblique pml,
from mid i.m. to apex.
basal to this line are two inconspicuous, narrow lines that recurve basad towards the costa; submarginal line represented by a row of small, black vein spots; fringe of inner margin from base to postmedian line clearly pink. Hindwing upperside generally blackish with a diffuse and poorly defined pinkish-orange median band.

Xylophanes chiron chiron

Xylophanes macasensis

Xylophanes mirabilis

Very distinct species, unlikely to be confused with other species.

Xylophanes pistacina
Fw apex slightly produced, pointed.
O. m. hollowed out below apex, evenly convex to anal angle.
G.c. variable: greenish-buff.
Three subparallel am lines, angled at CUA1.
First two pm lines form broadly preapical, prominent, straight, slightly oblique, dark band.
Third pml very faint.
Fourth pml distinct, vein dots.
Fifth pml curved from apex, continuous with greenish olive patch from M2 to M3.

Xylophanes pluto
Tegulae: dark brown edges.
Fw apex slightly produced, pointed.
O. m. hollowed out below apex, evenly convex, smooth or slightly crenulate, to anal angle.
Five subparallel am lines, evenly convex.
First pml thin but distinct, slightly oblique, recurved toward body at costa.
Additional pmls very dentate, less distinct.
Prominent white subapical, basal-median suffusions.

Xylophanes maculator

Xylophanes undata

Xylophanes fusimacula

Xylophanes t. tersa
Tegulae: strong orange midline.
Abdomen: four strong pale brown lines over orange g. c.,
weaker midline, outer lines.
strong orange lateral bands
Fw o.m. slightly convex below hollowed out subapical area.
1rst, 2nd pmls fused basally.
3rd, 4rth pmls thin over light background.
5-8th pml thicker, but
weak basally.
Hw pale yellow spots generally elongating toward apex,
more basal closer to margin.
Thin orange suffusion above cream fringe.

Xylophanes resta
forewing length: 36-41 mm.
Tegulae: weak golden midline.
Thorax: grey medial band, bordered laterally, divided medially by brown lines, continuing along abdomen, becoming faint after first two abdominal segments.
Fw: characteristic brown tone,
First pml very strong basally, disappearing towards apex;
second pml fused basally with first; fourth pml less than half width of first.
Hw pale yellow spots larger than tersa,
more distal closer to margin.

Xylophanes dolius
Tegulae: distinct orange center stripe over dark brown
Abdomen: orangey-buff lateral bands; midline segmented.
Apex slightly produced, pointed.
O.m. hollowed out below apex, strongly convex to anal angle.
As many as eight grey brown pm lines, subparallel to convex outer margin, accented over light grey ground colour.

X. maculator wolfi
Xylophanes media
X. por. continentalis
Xylophanes tyndarus

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