Updated as per personal communication with María Esperanza Chacín; April 1, 2005
Updated as per Hawkmoths of the World Kitching and Cadiou, 2000; May 2011
Updated as per CATE Sphingidae, 2009; May 17, 2011
Updated as per personal communication with Jose Ramon Alvarez Corral, ongoing
Hyles and Xylophanes
This checklist will become more accurate 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.
All images I receive remain the property of respective photographers and are credited as such.
Data such as wingspan, date, elevation, precise location, etc., is credited to persons who submit same.
I have arranged the images in accordance with my perception of wing characters: predominent markings, shape, colour,
There are probably some Venezuelan species not listed below, and there are some species not officially confirmed for Venezuela, although
I think they have a good chance of being found there.
All images that I use are credited to respective photographers and those images remain the property of the photographers. Data submissions are also acknowledged.
I hope that over the next twenty years the site can be further refined to allow for the creation of state by state checklists for Venezuela.
Many thanks to those who have already submitted photos and information. The CATE Sphingidae site has been extremely helpful regarding descriptions and determinations.
If there are mistakes on this site, they are my own. Bill Oehlke.
Xylophanes titana courtesy of Paolo Mazzei,
Rancho Grande, H. Pittier National Park, Venezuela.
Females often have a wing shape or pattern that differs from the males. I hope some day to also have a thumbnail checklist for the females.
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.
Thorax: dark green-brown tegulae; dark green-brown head.
Dark brown, dark green, distinct, apical, transverse post median line.
Dark brown shading in cell area.
Xylophanes amadis amadis
Fw o. m. concave, then convex.
Slightly s-shaped dominant pml, inwardly traced
inner post median lines are very weak if present.
Thin, distinct, dentate sbtrmnl line, greenish inner shading.
Double row of abdominal dots; no abdominal midline.
Greenish shades fade to brown.
Xylophanes anubus is similar in forewing pattern to several
species in the group above, 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.
The forewing pm line of anubus is thinner than that of docilis, and it also meets the inner margin
closer to the anal angle.
Mesothorax and metathorax: pale grey medial band continues onto abdomen as pair of thin lines,
enclosing a darker olive-green or brown median line. These three lines more distinct than in
loelia and Xylophanes libya.
First fw pml narrow, continuous from i. m. to apex, a little less oblique than loelia, but more than libya.
Fourth pml narrow, continuous (not formed from as series of vein dots as in libya and loelia).
Region between pmls 1 - 4 distinctly yellow, contrasting with pinkish coloration of rest of wing.
Black subapical dot usually very small. Submarginal lines form sharp angle anterior to M3 (as in libya).
Similar to loelia and Xylophanes libya, but has deeper red coloration of hw median band which is broader and tapers
toward and reaches costa.
Outer margin of median band convex, more distinct than loelia.
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.
Hw upperside with median band redder than in Xylophanes libya but paler than in Xylophanes neoptolemus, reaching the costal margin and with an
irregular inner edge; marginal band more even than in Xylophanes libya, narrow, sharply defined, not dentate near M2.
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,
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.
Similar to ceratomioides.
Fw o.m. less rounded below M2 than in ceratomioides; very slightly undulate.
Abdomen: three narrow lines; outer lines posteriorly divergent, not expanded into small triangular spots.
Fw elements more diffuse than in ceratomioides.
Costa lacking subapical, apical black spots.
Most distal antemedian line, most basal postmedian line meet on i. m. as in guianensis.
Pm band not clearly developed.
Hw subbasal, median bands: pale grey, shaded with brown, median band edges especially diffuse.
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.
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 crotonis, 91mm, Merida, Venezuela,
March 2001, 2050m, courtesy of Jose Ramon Alvarez Corral.
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
Tegula edged in grey along inner, outer margins,
no median line of grey scales.
Like crotonis but has broad grey thoracic/abdominal stripe,
often divided medially by narrow brown line.
Fw: olive-green; first and fourth postmedian lines closer together.
Xylophanes clarki ??
Very distinct species, unlikely to be confused with other species.
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
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.
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 chiron nechus ???
G. c.: buff with scattered black spots, most concentrated on costa,
and rusty-brown spots and markings.
Am lines: incomplete bands of irregular black dots/blobs in convex arc
from below costa, terminating before i. m..
Rusty brown pm band is broadly preapical, subparallel to straight outer margin.
Broad rusty brown convex arc just outside cell,
semicirular rusty brown curve outside pml from M1 to CUA1.
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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
1rst, 2nd pmls fused basally.
3rd, 4rth pmls thin over light background.
5-8th pmls thicker, but
Hw pale yellow spots generally elongating toward apex,
more basal closer to margin.
Thin orange suffusion above cream fringe.
Similar to Xylophanes tersa tersa and Xylophanes resta but differs in its dark, monotonous appearance. Head and thorax dorsally dark brown to brown-black.
Dorsal scaling of antenna dirty white. Abdomen dorsally ash-brown with five dark longitudinal lines; basal black patches present; laterally stripes paler
rust-brown. Forebasitarsus with outer row of spines. Tibiae externally white. Outer apical spur of hindtibia less than half as long as inner.
Forewing upperside ground colour ash-brown; postmedian lines indistinct, fourth line most prominent. Hindwing upperside as Xylophanes tersa tersa but median
band consisting of a row of cream-coloured spots.
X. tersa chaconi
Amazonas. This subspecies is very similar to nominate Xylophanes tersa tersa, but the ground colour is a dark grey-brown.
The upperside of the head and thorax are dark chestnut, with pale pattern elements dingy white. The underside of the palps,
head and thorax are dark orange, contrasting with the grey-brown ground colour of the undersides of other body parts.
Spots of hindwing median band, upperside, are suffused with grey.
possibly just a melanic form of tersa
no image available
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.
The apex of the forewing is distinctly pointed. Bands of dark and light brown colouration run parallel to the costal margin of the forewing.
The hindwing is black with small triangles of yellow towards the trailing edge, a characteristic feature of the X. tersa group.
The abdomen has a distinct pair of stripes dorsally, which serve to separate X. titana from similar species.
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