Amakosa rocksitter (insect: butterfly)


Specimen pictured bottom.

In 1862 Roland Trimen, curator at the South African Museum, named a genus of butterfly D’Urbania (now accepted as Durbania). This was in honour of his friend and fellow butterfly expert William D'Urban. D’Urban had experienced the wildlife of South Africa as a boy and when he returned to the Cape in the 1860s.

Trimen writes, ‘Mr. D'Urban's researches in [...], a region hitherto almost unknown to the Lepidopterist, have resulted in the discovery of a Rhopalocerous Fauna of upwards of 90 species. When it is borne in mind that Mr. D'Urban was barely a twelve-month in the country, and that the season was an unfavourable one, and remarkable for the scarcity of many Lepidopterous insects usually abundant, it must be granted that this is a highly satisfactory result, and one that seems to give promise of a rich harvest to future entomological explorers. [...] I have dedicated this curious and interesting genus to my friend W. S. M. D'Urban. It is, without question, the most valuable result of his [...] researches. The single species on which it is founded presents an aspect wholly at variance with that of the typical Lycaenidce’.

The type description states that D’Urban found D. amakosa at King William's Town and Windvogelberg in November and January where it was common, sitting on rocks and stones.

It is unclear whether this specimen holds type status.

This object is not on display.

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