Marbled Xenica (Geitoneura klugii)
Appearance: Upperside and fore wing underside brown with extended orange patches. Hind wing underside grey-brown marbled. Males have a strong, elongated sex-brand on the fore wing upperside.
Wingspan: 4 cm
Season: 1 generation from mid spring until summer.
Range: Southern Australia; from south-eastern WA through southern SA, VIC, ACT, and eastern NSW into south-eastern QLD; also in TAS.
Habitat: Forest and woodland in temperate regions; shrubland in semi-arid areas.
The Marbled Xenica is common and widespread throughout the temperate and semi-arid regions of south-western, southern, and south-eastern Australia including TAS. The butterflies usually inhabit open forests and woodland with a grassy understorey. Like most members of the Satyridae family, they are very alert and difficult to approach. Males have a prominent, dark, elongated sex-brand on the upperside of the fore wings.
There are several superficially similar species, such as the Western Xenica (Geitoneura minyas), the Forest Brown (Argynnina cyrila), or the Common Brown (Heteronympha merope). At closer inspection, however, all of these species can be easily distinguished through differences in their wing pattern as well as the colour of their eyes (grey in the Marbled Xenica, black in the very similar Western Xenica).