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Butterflies of the Indian subcontinent
Spotted Pierrot
Tarucus callinara  BUTLER, 1886
Family - LYCAENIDAE
subfamily - POLYOMMATINAE
Tribe - POLYOMMATINI
Tarucus callinara, male, Weligaththa, Sri Lanka  Adrian Hoskins
Introduction
There are about 24 species in the genus Tarucus. The majority are Oriental in distribution, with 8 species occuring in India, and 5 in south-east Asia. There are also 11 species in Africa, of which 2 extend their ranges into southern Europe.
Tarucus callinara is found in Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh, Burma and Thailand.
Tarucus callinara, female, Weligaththa, Sri Lanka  Adrian Hoskins
Habitats
This is a common species found in open habitats including forest edges and clearings, dry woodland, pastures, flowery gardens and beach hinterlands.
Tarucus callinara, male, Weligaththa, Sri Lanka  Adrian Hoskins
Lifecycle
The larval foodplants appear to be unrecorded. The foodplants of related Tarucus species include Zizyphus, Paliurus, Phylica ( Rhamnaceae ), Loranthus, ( Loranthaceae ) and Eugenia ( Myrtaceae ). Some species are known to be associated with Crematogaster ants.
Adult behaviour

In cloudy weather conditions both sexes bask on low herbage, with their wings held half open. Both sexes commonly nectar at Tridax and many other low growing flowers, walking about in tight circles on the flowerheads as they feed. Males often imbibe mineralised moisture from rocks, stones or damp patches of ground. When feeding, the butterflies always hold their wings erect.

 

 

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