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Butterflies of Africa
Common Red Glider
Cymothoe coccinata  HEWITSON, 1874
Family - NYMPHALIDAE
subfamily - LIMENITIDINAE
Tribe - ADOLIADINI
Cymothoe coccinata female, Bunso, Ghana Peter Bygate
Introduction
There are 72 described species in the genus Cymothoe, a group of large and magnificent butterflies commonly known as Gliders. The genus is entirely Afrotropical in distribution.
The males vary in colour, ranging from the pure white of caenis, and the deep ochreous yellow and chocolate brown of fumana, to the fabulous and aptly named Blood Red Glider sangaris. There are several "red" species - anitorgis, hartigi, haimodia, coccinata, ogova, excelsa, aramis, mabillei and sangaris. The males of these species are all extremely similar in appearance, but coccinata can be recognised by the tiny black submarginal chevrons on the hindwings.
Cymothoe coccinata is a West African species, found from Sierra Leone to Ghana.

Cymothoe coccinata male, Bunso, Ghana Adrian Hoskins

Habitats

This is a rainforest species, found at altitudes between about 100-500m.
Lifecycle
The eggs are laid singly on Rinorea ( Violaceae ).
Adult behaviour

On sunny mornings both sexes spend their time high in the tree tops, but in the afternoon they will sometimes descend to bask on low herbage. The gorgeous orange-red males also settle on forest tracks to imbibe moisture from damp patches.

 

 

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