Butterflies of the
Family - NYMPHALIDAE
Tribe - LIMENITIDINI
Chilapata, West Bengal, India
There are 3 Lebadea
species i.e. ismene,
is the commonest and most widespread species in the genus, being
found in India, Nepal, Myanmar, Thailand, peninsular Malaysia,
Sumatra, Sarawak, Brunei and Sabah.
This species is found in forested areas at
elevations between sea level and about 600 metres.
The egg is yellowish green. It is spherical in
shape, and covered with a honeycomb of hexagonal pits. A single
short spike arises at each intersection of the ridges surrounding
the pits, giving the egg a sea-urchin like appearance. The egg is
laid singly on the upperside of a leaf of the foodplant
Ixora ( Rubiaceae ), at the very tip of
small the caterpillar eats away the leaf either side of the midvein,
and rests on the projecting midrib. Older larvae nibble thin strips
either side of the midrib, leaving a very characteristic feeding
pattern. Throughout its life the caterpillar is marbled in shades of
greyish-green and brown. It is covered with multi-branched spikes
along the back and sides.
The young larva attaches its droppings and tiny
fragments of dead leaf to the spikes. On mature larvae the dorsal
spikes on the 3rd thoracic segment are exceptionally long, and there
are a pair of bright green wedge-shaped markings below the spiracles
on the 2nd-4th abdominal segments.
The glossy chrysalis is dark olive-brown, marbled
with white on the head, and is suspended by the cremaster from a
twig or stem close to the foodplant.
can be found flying around forest glades, and along roadsides in
forested areas. They commonly bask on foliage at heights between 1-4
metres above ground level. Males sometimes mud-puddle at damp
patches, and are attracted to wood ash in areas of forest where the
under-storey is burned to encourage grasses for cattle.
Buxa, West Bengal, India