The Papua Insects Foundation

about us:




The Blues (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae, Lycaeninae) of Papua Indonesia

by Stefan Schröder


Philiris helena (Snellen, 1887)

ssp. helena (Snellen, 1887)
ssp. aurelioides Rothschild, 1915
amblypodina Röber, 1926





STATUS: Not a common species. Two subspecies represented in Papua. Subspecific classification of P. helena is not yet settled. Several names are in use, but more information is needed to confirm the presence of well differentiated subspecies. According to Parsons (1998: 367), nominotypical ssp. helena is distributed throughout northern mainland PNG, and separation from ssp. aurelioides is based on darker wing underside, slightly larger size and wider dark margins in aurelioides males. This can be observed in specimens from Timika, clearly showing wider wing margins than those from Sorong. However, specimens from Fak Fak and also from Yapen appear to be intermediate, which questions subspecific separation. Female specimens generally do not support a subspecific concept based on different phenotypes.

PAPUA LOCALITIES: ssp. helena: Waigeo Island; Biak Island; Japen Island: Waropen; Roon Island; New Guinea: Fakfak, Nabire, Sarmi, Sorong; ssp. aurelioides: New Guinea: Timika, Utakwa River. Details in gazetteer.


DATA SOURCES: KSP. Literature (see below).






Parson, M., 1999. The butterflies of Papua New Guinea. Their systematics and biology: 736 pp., Academic Press, London.
Tite, G.E., 1963. A revision of the genus Candalides and allied genera (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae). Bulletin of the British Museum (Natural History) Entomology Supplement, 14: 199-259.