Under Construction

Elzunia Bryk 1937

Andrew V. Z. Brower
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
taxon links [up-->]Elzunia humboldt [up-->]Elzunia pavonii [down<--]Ithomiini Interpreting the tree
close box

This tree diagram shows the relationships between several groups of organisms.

The root of the current tree connects the organisms featured in this tree to their containing group and the rest of the Tree of Life. The basal branching point in the tree represents the ancestor of the other groups in the tree. This ancestor diversified over time into several descendent subgroups, which are represented as internal nodes and terminal taxa to the right.

example of a tree diagram

You can click on the root to travel down the Tree of Life all the way to the root of all Life, and you can click on the names of descendent subgroups to travel up the Tree of Life all the way to individual species.

For more information on ToL tree formatting, please see Interpreting the Tree or Classification. To learn more about phylogenetic trees, please visit our Phylogenetic Biology pages.

close box
Containing group: Ithomiini


Members of Elzunia are among the largest ithomiines. The species occur in mid-elevation forest in the Venezuelan, Colombian and Ecuadorean Andes, where they are engaged in Müllerian mimicry with Heliconius hecuba, Heliconius atthis and Megoleria susiana, and perhaps serve as models for female Catonephele chromis (Biblidinae).

Larvae recorded on Prestonia (Apocynaceae), like members of closely-related Tithorea and unlike most other ithomiine larvae, which feed on Solanaceae. (Neild, 2008).


Large ithomiines with relatively short wings. Wing color black with yellow or white spots and bands. Males have a single patch of elongated androconial scales on the costal margin of the dorsal hindwings (as opposed to two in Tithorea).

May be distinguished from similar-looking Heliconius species by the more triangular forewings and the bilobed distal margin of the hindwing discal cell (teardrop-shaped in Heliconius).


Lamas G ed. 2004. Atlas of Neotropical Lepidoptera. Checklist: Part 4A Hesperioidea - Papiionoidea. Gainesville: Scientific Publishers/Association of Tropical Lepidoptera.

Neild, A.F.E. (2008) The Butterflies of Venezuela. Part 2: Nymphalidae II (Acraeinae, Libytheinae, NYmphalinae, Ithomiinae, Morphinae), Meridian Publications, London

Title Illustrations
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Scientific Name Elzunia humboldt bomplandii
Location Colombia: Antioquia, Monterredondo
Comments Monterredondo 8/17/2010--70073
Specimen Condition Live Specimen
Identified By Kim Garwood
Life Cycle Stage adult
View ventral
Source Elzunia humboldt bomplandii- Ventral
Source Collection Flickr
Copyright © 2010 Mike Chapman
Scientific Name Elzunia pavonii
Location Ecuador: Prov. Loja, Macará
Comments DNA voucher E-12-1 from Brower et al. 2006. Head and thorax removed for DNA extraction.
Specimen Condition Dead Specimen
Identified By Andrew V. Z. Brower
Life Cycle Stage adult
View dorsal/ventral composite
Collection Brower DNA voucher collection
Collector Keith Willmott
Image Use creative commons This media file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License - Version 3.0.
Copyright © 2007
About This Page

Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, USA

Correspondence regarding this page should be directed to Andrew V. Z. Brower at

Page: Tree of Life Elzunia Bryk 1937. Authored by Andrew V. Z. Brower. The TEXT of this page is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution License - Version 3.0. Note that images and other media featured on this page are each governed by their own license, and they may or may not be available for reuse. Click on an image or a media link to access the media data window, which provides the relevant licensing information. For the general terms and conditions of ToL material reuse and redistribution, please see the Tree of Life Copyright Policies.

Citing this page:

Brower, Andrew V. Z. 2011. Elzunia Bryk 1937. Version 24 July 2011 (under construction). http://tolweb.org/Elzunia/27577/2011.07.24 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/

edit this page
close box

This page is a Tree of Life Branch Page.

Each ToL branch page provides a synopsis of the characteristics of a group of organisms representing a branch of the Tree of Life. The major distinction between a branch and a leaf of the Tree of Life is that each branch can be further subdivided into descendent branches, that is, subgroups representing distinct genetic lineages.

For a more detailed explanation of the different ToL page types, have a look at the Structure of the Tree of Life page.

close box


Page Content

articles & notes



Explore Other Groups

random page

  go to the Tree of Life home page