Scalloped Grass Yellow
FELDER & FELDER, 1862
Family - PIERIDAE
subfamily - COLIADINAE
Eurema alitha Wollongong,
© David Fischer
The Grass Yellows
are all fairly small butterflies, readily recognised by their bright
yellow wings and their habit of gathering in small groups on patches
of damp sand or soil. Despite their name, none of their caterpillars
feed on grasses - the name is derived from the fact that most
species are found in disturbed grassy habitats.
are among the most familiar of tropical butterflies.
There are 70 known species worldwide, of which 36 are found
in the Neotropical region, 13 in North America, 10 in Africa, 25 in
the Oriental region and 10 in Australia / Papua New Guinea. Many are
migratory in behaviour and
the ranges of several such as hecabe
overlap into in 2 or more of the zoogeographical regions.
Eurema alitha has
13 subspecies, found variously in the Philippines, Palawan, n.
Borneo, Sulawesi, Java, Bali, Timor, West Irian, Papua New Guinea
and most of the islands in the South Pacific. In Australia it occurs
in Northern Territory, Western Australia and Queensland.
species inhabits open or disturbed grassy areas including forest
clearings at elevations between sea level and about 1000m.
The egg is skittle-shaped and cream in colour. It is laid singly on
the upper surface of leaves of the foodplants. The larva when fully
grown is bluish-green above the pale spiracular line and dark green
below it. The upper half of each segment is banded with dozens of
tiny tubercles from which arise short setae. The larval foodplant in
Indonesia and the Philippines is Albizia.
In Australia only Glycine ( Fabaceae )
is used. The pupa is pale green and unmarked. It is formed on a stem
of the foodplant or another nearby plant and is attached by the
cremaster and a silk girdle.
To be completed.