Eur. J. Entomol. 110 (3): 435-442, 2013 | DOI: 10.14411/eje.2013.058

Sexual differences in spectral sensitivity and wing colouration of 13 species of Japanese Thecline butterflies (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae)

Michio IMAFUKU
Section of Biological Science, Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University, Sakyo, Kyoto, 606-8502 Japan; e-mail: imafuku@kyoto.zaq.ne.jp

The correlation between dorsal wing colours and spectral sensitivity of the compound eyes of 13 species of thecline butterflies, consisting of 8 sexually monomorphic and 5 dimorphic species, was investigated. Spectral reflectance of the dorsal surfaces of the wings was measured using a spectrophotometer and spectral sensitivities using electroretinography. All 13 species examined showed a common basic pattern of spectral sensitivity with a primary peak at a wavelength of 440-460 nm. Detailed analyses of the deviations in sensitivity from the basic pattern revealed a correlation in monomorphic species with conspicuous wing hues, especially in males.

Keywords: Theclini, Lycaenidae, Lepidoptera, wing colour, spectral reflectance, sexual dimorphism, spectral sensitivity, electroretinography

Received: August 3, 2012; Accepted: February 11, 2013; Published: July 11, 2013

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