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Taxonomic revision of the tribe Acraeini Boisduval, 1833 (Papilionoidea: Nymphalidae: Heliconiinae)

Mark C. Williams
Graham A. Henning


The systematic and taxonomic history of the tribe Acraeini is reviewed. Using a robust dated molecular phylogeny published in 2021, and combining this with morphological and ecological data-sets, we divided the clearly paraphyletic genus Acraea (sensu lato) into five genera. We raised the subgenera Rubraea Henning, 1992, Stephenia Henning, 1992 to genera and reinstate Bematistes Hemming, 1935 and Telchinia Hübner, [1819] as valid genera. The genus Tildia gen. nov. is erected for a monophyletic clade of Acraea (sensu lato), and we treat the Neotropical Actinote and the Afrotropical Telchinia as separate genera. Because of the relatively low sampling of ‘Telchinia’ species in the dated molecular phylogeny we suggest that the possibly paraphyletic Telchinia be further investigated using more complete sampling. We furthermore present an updated alpha taxonomy for the six Afrotropical genera in the tribe – Acraea, Rubraea stat. nov, Stephenia stat. nov, Tildia gen. nov., Bematistes stat. rev. and Telchinia stat. rev. The current alpha taxonomy of the New World genus Actinote and the Old World genus Cethosia is given.

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eISSN: 2307-5031