Homologies in the colour patterns of the genus <i>Charaxes</i> (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae)

  • Nijhout H
  • Wray G
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Abstract

The phylogenetically and morphologically diverse patterns of Charaxes can be reduced to a simple set of pattern elements which can be homologized throughout the genus. At least five types of correspondence (homologies) exist among pattern elements: those between (1) species, (2) forewing and hindwing, (3) dorsal and ventral wing surface, (4) serial wing-cells, and (5) individual pattern elements within a single wing-cell. Differences in Charaxes colour patterns result from the distortion, elaboration, enlargement, reduction or loss of individual pattern elements. Further variation is often the result of dislocation of pattern elements from their serial homologues in neighbouring wing- cells, and fusion of individual pattern elements to create larger areas of colour. The type of analysis presented in this paper should be broadly applicable within the Lepidoptera and may prove useful in studying the systematics of colour patterns and the evolution of the developmental system that gives rise to them

Author-supplied keywords

  • -charaxes

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Authors

  • H Frederik Nijhout

  • G a Wray

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