Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Early stage of Eurema hecabe contubernalis (Common Grass Yellow)

Early stage of Eurema brigitta senna (No brand Grass Yellow)

Early stage of Mycalesis perseoides

ID corrected as pointed out by Dr. Seow TL, previously recorded as M. mineus.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Early stage of Black Rose (Pachliopta aristolochiae antiphus)

The Black rose -- this subspecies (Pachliopta aristolochiae antiphus) was not recorded by the earlier author or researchers in Peninsular Malaysia & Singapore.

According to the record, in Singapore, it was first sighted some time back in 1995 by Steven Neo, who captured a specimen at Venus Drive. It was an all-black specimen, without the white hindwing markings. The red spots and abdomen were quite typical of the Common Rose ssp asteris but smaller or fewer with a slightly different shape.

Starting from year 2004, this species become a more commonly found "Common" Rose species in Singapore and more sighting has been reported since then.

Simon Chan from NSS Butterfly Interest Group first highlighted in the Nature news in Mar 2007 that, the Black Rose could be the Bornean subspecies antiphus and not the usual asteris.

While I'm not too sure who make the final decision that it's indeed the subspecies antiphus, I did manage to take the opportunity to collect an egg of this Black Rose & breed it to adulthood.

Host plant:
Family: Aristolochiaceae
Species: Aristolochia tagala

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Telicota colon stinga (Pale Palm Dart)

Telicota colon stinga (Pale Palm Dart) - latest re-discovery of Singapore butterfly

The genus Telicota is one of the challenging to identify and distinguish from the look-alike species in the group, and definitely not easy to identify from field shots. However, I'm pleased to announce the re-discovery of the Telicota colon stinga (Pale Palm Dart) and added it to the Singapore Butterfly observation list.

I bred this skipper 2 years back on Guinea Grass but not until recently, when I learnt how to dissect butterflies and make meaningful comparison. After careful investigations and seeking advice from Malaysia butterflies expert, Dr Laurence Kirton, it was confirmed that this skipper indeed a Telicota colon stinga.

Explanation of the ID keys

Life History

Caterpillar Host Plants: Panicum maximum (Guinea Grass)

Head view of 4th instar larva:

Head view of 5th instar larva

Male genitalia view

The Butterflies of The Malay Peninsula, A.S. Corbet and H.M. Pendlebury, 4th Edition, Malayan Nature Society.
The Butterflies of Hong Kong, M. J. Basscombe, G. Johnston, F. S. Bascombe.
Hong Kong Butterflies, Philip Yik & Wing-leung Hui

Further reading: Telicota colon by Don Herbison-Evans

Photo courtesy of ©Federick Ho