Heliconius telesipheMargarita Beltrán and Andrew V. Z. Brower
Heliconius telesiphe occurs in mid-elevations in the Andes, where it is involved in a mimicry complex with another heliconiine species, Podotricha telesiphe.
Early stages: Eggs are yellow and approximately 1.6 x 0.8 mm (h x w). Females usually place eggs singly on growing shoots of the host plant (Brown, 1981).
Heliconius telesiphe is distributed in the central Andes. The map below shows an approximate representation of the geographic distribution of this species. The original data used to draw these maps are derived from Brown (1979) which is available at Keith S. Brown Jr. (1979). Ecological Geography and Evolution in Neotropical Forests
H. telesiphe occurs from 600 to 2,500 m in cloud forest. Usually individuals fly rapidly and in the lowerstory. The males sit on female pupae a day before emergence, and mating occurs the next morning, before the female has completely eclosed. Adults roost at night in small groups 2-10 m above ground in twigs or tendrils (Brown, 1981).
Host plant: H. telesiphe larvae feed primarily on plants from the genus Passiflora, subgenus Plectostemma (Brown, 1981).
Brown K. S. 1981 The Biology of Heliconius and Related Genera. Annual Review of Entomology 26, 427-456.
Doubleday E. 1847 The genera of diurnal Lepidoptera: comprising their generic characters, a notice of their habits and transformations, and a catalogue of the species of each genus. London, Longman, Brown, Green & Longmans. 1: 87-98, pls. 16-17 (9 July 1847), 99-106, pls. 18-19 (4 August 1847), 107-110, pls. 18*, 20 (1 September 1847), 111-118, pls. 21, 23 (4 October 1847), 119-124, pls. 22, 24 (2 November 1847), 125-132, pls. 25, 28 (2 December 1847), 133-136 (7 January 1848), 137-138 (3 February 1848)
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University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, USA
Correspondence regarding this page should be directed to Margarita Beltrán at and Andrew V. Z. Brower at
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- First online 18 February 2007
- Content changed 12 August 2008
Citing this page:
Beltrán, Margarita and Andrew V. Z. Brower. 2008. Heliconius telesiphe http://tolweb.org/Heliconius_telesiphe/72929/2008.08.12 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/. Version 12 August 2008 (under construction).