Niklas Wahlberg

The subfamily Danainae contains 545 species placed into 60 genera and 3 tribes, Danaini, Tellervini and Ithomiini. In the past the tribes Danaini and Ithomiini were considered to be subfamilies, with Tellervini being within the ithomiines. The phylogenetic relationships have been studied using both morphological and molecular data. It appears clear now that Danaini is sister to Tellervini+Ithomiini.

Key publications for Danainae systematics:

  1. Ackery, P. R. 1987. The danaid genus Tellervo (Lepidoptera, Nymphalidae) - a cladistic approach. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 89: 203-247.
  2. Ackery, P. R. & Vane-Wright, R. 1984. Milkweed Butterflies: Their Cladistics and Biology. British Museum (Natural History), London.
  3. Brower, A. V. Z., A. V. L. Freitas, M.-M. Lee, K. L. Silva Brandão, A. Whinnett, and K. R. Willmott. 2006. Phylogenetic relationships among the Ithomiini (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) inferred from one mitochondrial and two nuclear gene regions. Systematic Entomology 31:288-301.
  4. Brower, A. V. Z., Wahlberg, N., Ogawa, J. R., Boppré, M. & Vane-Wright, R.I. 2010: Phylogenetic relationships among genera of danaine butterflies (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) as implied by morphology and DNA sequences. Systematics and Biodiversity 8: 75-89. doi:10.1080/14772001003626814
  5. Mallarino, R., E. Bermingham, K. R. Willmott, A. Whinnett, and C. D. Jiggins. 2005. Molecular systematics of the butterfly genus Ithomia (Lepidoptera: Ithomiinae): a composite phylogenetic hypothesis based on seven genes. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 34:625-644.
  6. Parsons, M. J. 1999. The Butterflies of Papua New Guinea: Their Systematics and Biology. Academic Press, London.
  7. Smith, D. A. S., G. Lushai, and J. A. Allen. 2005. A classification of Danaus butterflies (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) based upon data from morphology and DNA. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 144:191-212.
  8. Willmott, K.R. & Freitas, A.V.L., 2006. Higher-level phylogeny of the Ithomiinae (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae): classification, patterns of larval hostplant colonization and diversification. Cladistics 22: 297-368.