Chromosomal evolution in the South American Nymphalidae.Hereditas. 2007 Sep; 144(4):137-48.H
We give the chromosome numbers of about 80 species or subspecies of Biblidinae as well as of numbers of neotropical Libytheinae (one species), Cyrestinae (4) Apaturinae (7), Nymphalinae (about 40), Limenitidinae (16) and Heliconiinae (11). Libytheana has about n=32, the Biblidinae, Apaturinae and Nymphalinae have in general n=31, the Limenitidinae have n=30, the few Argynnini n=31 and the few species of Acraeni studied have also mostly n=31. The results agree with earlier data from the Afrotropical species of these taxa. We supplement these data with our earlier observations on Heliconiini, Danainae and the Neotropical Satyroid taxa. The lepidopteran modal n=29-31 represents clearly the ancestral condition among the Nymphalidae, from which taxa with various chromosome numbers have differentiated. The overall results show that Neotropical taxa have a tendency to evolve karyotype instability, which is in stark contrast to the otherwise stable chromosome numbers that characterize both Lepidoptera and Trichoptera.