Saturday, January 09, 2010

Leopard Lacewing Butterfly

Leopard Lacewing Buttefly - Female upper 

Female - wing pattern, upper surface

The Leopard Lacewing Butterfly, which is scientifically known as Cethosia cyane, ranges from India, throughout Southeast Asia. This species exhibits a strong sexual diamorphism, with the females featuring wing patterns with a gray or white background, whereas the upper surfaces of the males are a bright orange, yellow, or red. Both sexes are sprinkled with blackish-blue spots and lining veins.

Leopard Lacewing Buttefly - Male upper 

Male - wing pattern, upper surface

The caterpillars of the lacewing butterflies feed on the leaves of the Passion Flower Plant, of the genus Passiflora. The ingestion of the defensive phyto-chemicals of the plant  renders the larvae and adult butterflies  with a defensive mechanism that makes them unpalatable to potential predators. The adults also display a distinct warning coloration that advertises this fact. When handled, these tropical lepidopterans often exude a noxious odour generated from the ingested passion vine organic compounds.

Leopard Lacewing Buttefly - Male lower 

Male - wing patterns, lower surface

11 comments:

  1. :)
    good read and amazing pics

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  2. Great work, your text really helps us appreciate the species and their uniqueness.
    Thanks Santosh.

    Anberin

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  3. Great Photos. Did you click them?

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  4. Oh yeah! Just saw your name there!

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  5. Very pretty ... great shots

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  6. awesome photos.. Very well taken

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  7. wow- these are gorgeous pics santa...

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  8. Like the color combination! looks gorgeous!well captured Santosh!

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  9. Mind boggling colors... esp the first pic with red flowers is an awesome combination...

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  10. extremely beautiful both - the butterfly and the way you captured them

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  11. Gorgeous shots! I superlove butterflies! :) Following ya! On network blogs too! =)

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