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Lime Butterfly, നാരകക്കാളി (Papilio Demoleus)
It gets its common names from its host plants, which are usually citrus species such as the cultivated lime. Unlike most swallowtail butterflies, it does not have a prominent tail. The butterfly is a pest and invasive species from the Old World which has spread to the Caribbean and Central America.
Above, both sexes are black with yellow spots and markings, some of which forming an irregular and intermittent macular band running across the forewing to the mid-dorsum of the hindwing. A submarginal series of smaller yellow spots can be found on both wings. In space 1b on the hindwing, there is a red spot in both sexes. In the male, this spot is capped with a narrow blue lunule with a very narrow intervening black gap. In contrast, the red spot and the blue lunule in the female have a rather large black spot between them. Underneath, both sexes are mostly yellow with black streaks and irregularly-shaped spots. On the hindwing, several black spots are lined with blue striae. There is a series of orange post-discal bars on both hind- and forewings.
In the early morning the butterflies fly low over the ground, and settle to bask for long periods on low vegetation, with their wings outspread. Later in the day as temperatures rise they become very active. Males spend their time searching for females, or mud -puddling at damp patches of ground. Females can often be seen nectaring at flowers, and research has shown that they are genetically programmed to seek blue or purple flowers in preference to other coloured blooms.
Content Source: various websites
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