The Satyrinae, the satyrines or satyrids, commonly known as the browns, are a subfamily of the Nymphalidae (brush-footed butterflies). They were formerly considered a distinct family, Satyridae. This group contains nearly half of the known diversity of brush-footed butterflies. The true number of the Satyrinae species is estimated to exceed 2,400.[2]

Butterfly April 2008-2a.jpg
Speckled wood, Pararge aegeria
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Nymphalidae
Subfamily: Satyrinae
Boisduval, 1833

Dirini[citation needed]
and see text

Over 280 genera, some 2400 species



They are generally weak fliers and often shun bright sunlight, preferring moist and semishaded habitats. The caterpillars feed chiefly on monocotyledonous plants such as palms, grasses, and bamboos. The Morphinae are sometimes united with this group.

The taxonomy and systematics of the subfamily are under heavy revision. Much of the early pioneering work of L. D. Miller[3] has helped significantly by creating some sort of order. Dyndirus (Capronnier, 1874) is a satyrid incertae sedis. Other than this genus, according to the latest studies on the classification of Nymphalidae,[4] all satyrines have been assigned to one of the tribes, at least preliminarily.[5] For detailed lists, see the tribe pages.


  1. ^ "Satyrinae".
  2. ^ The Lepidoptera Taxome Project (TLTP) (2007): Taxonomy of butterflies: the scale of the problem. Retrieved 2007-SEP-07.)
  3. ^ Miller, L.D. (1968): The higher classification, phylogeny and zoogeography of the Satyridae (Lepidoptera). Mem. Am. Entomol. Soc. 24: [vi] + iv + 1-174.)
  4. ^ The Lepidoptera Taxome Project (TLTP) (2007): Taxonomy of butterflies: the scale of the problem. Retrieved 2007-SEP-07.
  5. ^ Savela, Markku (2007): Markku Savela's Lepidoptera and some other life forms: Satyrinae. Version of 2007-MAY-12. Retrieved 2007-MAY-31.)

Further readingEdit

  • Glassberg, Jeffrey Butterflies through Binoculars, The West (2001)
  • Guppy, Crispin S. and Shepard, Jon H. Butterflies of British Columbia (2001)
  • James, David G. and Nunnallee, David Life Histories of Cascadia Butterflies (2011)
  • Pelham, Jonathan Catalogue of the Butterflies of the United States and Canada (2008)
  • Pyle, Robert Michael The Butterflies of Cascadia (2002)

External linksEdit