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Superregnum: Eukaryota
Cladus: Unikonta
Cladus: Opisthokonta
Cladus: Holozoa
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Cladus: Protostomia
Cladus: Ecdysozoa
Cladus: Panarthropoda
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Hexapoda
Classis: Insecta
Cladus: Dicondylia
Subclassis: Pterygota
Cladus: Metapterygota
Infraclassis: Neoptera
Cladus: Eumetabola
Cladus: Endopterygota
Superordo: Panorpida
Cladus: Amphiesmenoptera
Ordo: Lepidoptera
Subordo: Glossata
Cladus: Coelolepida
Cladus: Myoglossata
Cladus: Neolepidoptera
Infraordo: Heteroneura
Cladus: Eulepidoptera
Cladus: Ditrysia
Cladus: Apoditrysia
Cladus: Obtectomera
Cladus: Macroheterocera
Superfamilia: Geometroidea

Familia: Uraniidae
Subfamilia: Uraniinae
Genera: Alcides – ChrysiridiaCyphuraLyssaUrania – Urapteritra – Urapteroides
Uraniinae Blanchard, 1845

The Uraniinae or uraniine moths are a subfamily of moths in the family Uraniidae. It contains seven genera that occur in the tropics of the world.

Three of its genera (Alcides, Chrysiridia, and Urania) are essentially diurnal, although some crepuscular activity has been recorded. They are blackish with markings in iridescent green or light blue; some species have orange, gold or pink highlights. They are as brightly marked as the most colorful butterflies; indeed, they bear an uncanny resemblance in shape and coloration to some papilionid butterflies (swallowtails and relatives). They are also usually toxic, hence the bright warning colors. Cases are known where harmless butterflies mimic these toxic moths, e.g. Papilio laglaizei and Alcides agathyrsus.

The remaining genera in the subfamily are far less colorful, overall gray-brown with a light band on each wing (Lyssa) or white with brownish markings (Cyphura, Urapteritra, and Urapteroides), and mainly nocturnal or crepuscular. Despite their relatively dull colors, Lyssa species are impressive because of their large size with a typical wingspan of 10–16 cm (3.9–6.3 in). No other species in the subfamily has a wingspan that exceeds 10 cm (3.9 in).


This list of species is adapted mostly with some rearrangements from The Global Lepidoptera Names Index;[2] it is likely to be fairly complete (as of January 2006) as including valid species for most of which distributional information is here given.

Alcides Hübner, [1822]

Alcides agathyrsus Kirsch, 1877 (New Guinea)
Alcides argyrios Gmelin, 1788
Alcides arnus Felder & Rogenhofer, 1874
Alcides aruus Felder, 1874 (Aru I.)
Alcides aurora Salvin & Godman, 1877 (New Britain, New Ireland)
Alcides boops Westwood, 1879
Alcides cydnus Felder, 1859 (Maluku)
Alcides latona Druce, 1886 (Solomons)
Alcides liris Felder, 1860 (New Guinea)
Alcides metaurus (Hopffer, 1856) (Australia)
Alcides orontes (Linnaeus, 1763) (Moluccas, Ambon Island)
Alcides ribbei Pagenstecher, 1912
Alcides sordidior Rothschild, 1916
Alcides zodiaca (Butler, 1869) (Australia)

Chrysiridia Hübner, [1823]

Chrysiridia croesus (Gerstaecker, 1871) – African sunset moth (Tanzania)
Chrysiridia rhipheus (Drury, 1773) – Madagascan sunset moth (Madagascar)

Cyphura geminia from Ambon Island, Maluku

Cyphura Warren, 1902

Cyphura albisecta Warren
Cyphura approximans Swinhoe, 1916
Cyphura atramentaria Warren
Cyphura bifasciata Butler, 1879
Cyphura catenulata Warren, 1902
Cyphura caudiferaria Boisduval
Cyphura clarissima Butler
Cyphura costalis Butler
Cyphura dealbata Warren
Cyphura destrigata Kirsch
Cyphura extensa Rothschild
Cyphura falka Swinhoe
Cyphura geminia (Cramer, 1777) (Ambon Island)
Cyphura gutturalis Swinhoe, 1916
Cyphura latimarginata Swinhoe, 1902
Cyphura maxima Strand
Cyphura multistrigaria Warren
Cyphura mundaria Walker
Cyphura pannata Felder
Cyphura pardata Warren
Cyphura phantasma Felder
Cyphura pieridaria Warren, 1902
Cyphura reducta Joicey & Talbot
Cyphura semialba Warren
Cyphura semiobsoleta Warren
Cyphura subsimilis Warren, 1902
Cyphura swinhoei Joicey, 1917
Cyphura urapteroides Joicey

Lyssa Hübner, 1823

Lyssa achillaria Hübner, 1816
Lyssa curvata Skinner, 1903 (Vanuatu)
Lyssa fletcheri Regteren Altena, 1953
Lyssa macleayi (Montrouzier, 1857) (Australia)
Lyssa menoetius (Hopffer, 1856) (Borneo, Philippines, Sangir, Sulawesi)

Lyssa mutata Butler, 1887 (Solomons)
Lyssa patroclus (Linnaeus, 1758) (Moluccas)
Lyssa patroclaria Hübner, 1816
Lyssa toxopeusi Regteren Altena, 1953
Lyssa velutinus Röber, 1927
Lyssa zampa (Butler, 1869) (Himalaya to southern China, Thailand, Andamans, Philippines, Sulawesi)

Lithograph of Urania sloanus (top) and Urania brasiliensis (bottom) published in 1897; they were formerly placed in the genus Cydimon

Urania Fabricius, 1807

Urania leilus (Linnaeus, 1758) (Central and Amazonian South America)
Urania brasiliensis Swainson, 1833 (Atlantic forest, Brazil)
Urania fulgens (Walker, 1854) (Veracruz, Mexico, throughout Central America to northern Ecuador west of the Andes)
Urania poeyi Herrich-Schäffer, 1866 (E. Cuba)
Urania boisduvalii Guérin-Meneville, 1829 (W. Cuba)
Urania amphiclus Guenée, 1857]
Urania elegans Niepelt, 1930
Urania fernandinae MacLeay, 1834
Urania surinamensis Swainson]
Urania occidentalis Swainson, 1833
Urania sloanus Cramer, 1779 (Jamaica, extinct circa 1894)
Urania sloanaria Hübner, 1816

Urapteritra Viette, 1972

Urapteritra antsianakariae Oberthür, 1923 (Madagascar)
Urapteritra falcifera (Weymer, 1892) (East Africa)
Urapteritra mabillei Viette, 1972 (Madagascar)
Urapteritra montana Viette, 1972 (Madagascar)
Urapteritra piperita Oberthür, 1923 (Madagascar)
Urapteritra recurvata Warren (Madagascar)
Urapteritra suavis Oberthür, 1923 (Madagascar)
Urapteritra fasciata (Mabille, 1878)(Madagascar)

Urapteroides astheniata from Australia

Urapteroides Moore, 1888

Urapteroides anerces Meyrick, 1886 (Fiji)
Urapteroides astheniata (Guenée, 1857) (Himalaya to New Guinea, Queensland)
Urapteroides diana Swinhoe (Peninsular Malaysia) (possibly a form of U. astheniata)
Urapteroides equestraria Boisduval
Urapteroides hermaea Druce, 1888
Urapteroides hyemalis Butler, 1887 (Solomons, Vanuatu)
Urapteroides malgassaria Mabille, 1878
Urapteroides swinhoei Rothschild
Urapteroides urapterina Butler, 1877


Lees, David C. and Smith, Neal G. (1991) "Foodplants of the Uraniinae (Uraniinae) and their Systematic, Evolutionary and Ecological Significance. Journal of the Lepidopterists' Society, vol. 45. available at Archived 2007-03-15 at the Wayback Machine

Beccaloni, George; et al. (eds.). "Search Results Subfamily: Uraniinae". The Global Lepidoptera Names Index. Natural History Museum, London.

External links

Moths of Borneo: Subfamily Uraniinae (with pictures and description of species: Lyssa zampa, L. menoetius, Urapteroides astheniata)

Further reading

van Regteren Altena, C. O. (1953) A revision of the genus Nyctalemon Dalman (Lepidoptera, Uraniidae) with notes on the biology, distribution, and evolution of its species. Zoologische Verhandelingen 19(1): 1-58. Note: Nyctalemon is a junior synonym of Lyssa.

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