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Heliconius erato petiverana
Today certainly with DNA, in older times with genital disection and microscopic examination. Some of the specimens were very carefully described and according to these quite ineffective taxonomy compared with the knowledge of today there were and will be several renaming in fauna and flora. And looking the same means specially looking on pictures the same. If you have the native specimen you certainly will see some small differences and then you need the whole (!) literature about the species and even then you may be misleaded or you will find some confusing results. Heliconius are probably the most scientifically examined butterfly in the world, so there is quite a bulk of serious literature around.
Wow, Very interesting! And another question... How do they known it's a subspecies if they look exactly the same? DNA testing or something like that? Thanks a lot for the info
The only difference between species and subspecies is the location ;-)... Petiverana is the one from Costa Rica. Beside this there is no chance to separate them. It is not even possible to separate it from its mimicry Heliconius melpomene (rosina), also from Costa Rica. At least from the dorsal view. If you have a ventral view then it is possible. Some researchers say that there are some features for distinguishing, but others do not believe in these theories (size of the white stripe, form of the red patches).
Thanks bayucca for the subspecies' info, but i have to ask... What's the difference between the species and the subspecies... They look almost the same to me (at least in the photos i found on google)
Correct ID thanks to the ventral view ;-)... Subespecies would be Petiverana.
Lat: 9.80, Long: -84.13
Spotted on Mar 25, 2012 Submitted on Mar 25, 2012