Unknown Hemipteran from Mexico

White butterfly/moth in Chiapas, Mexico
Location: Just outside Tuxtla-Gutierrez, Chiapas, Mexico
April 11, 2011 3:48 pm
While there is only one in this picture (on a neighboring tree), there was a tree covered with hundreds of these guys. The owner of the property said they are always there. To illustrate, she hit the branch with a stick. They fluttered off, but most of them immediately landed again on the tree. She also pointed out that some just drifted to the ground because they were already dead and just stuck to the branch. Any idea what it is?
Signature: David

Unknown Hemipteran

Dear David,
It seems the morning has escaped us and we haven’t much time to research this little beauty at the moment.  It is neither a butterfly nor a moth.  It is a free-living Hemipteran, perhaps one of the Planthoppers in the superfamily
Fulgoroidea.  We will try to provide a species identification in the future, but for now we just want to get a few new postings online, so we are tagging your example as unidentified in the hope our readership will have some time to assist us and you.

Karl provides yet another identification
Hi Daniel and David:
It appears to be a Flatid Planthopper (Fulgoroidea: Flatidae) in the genus Poekilloptera. There are several similar looking species, but this one is a very close match to P. phalaenoides. The species ranges from Mexico, south to the northern half of South America as far as Bolivia. Regards. Karl

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