Great Windmill (Atrophaneura dasarada) is a butterfly found in India that belongs to the Windmills group of the genus Atrophaneura, comprising tailed black swallowtail butterflies with white spots and red submarginal crescents.
Range and Status
The Great Windmill is not rare or threatened.
Five subspecies. The following occur in the Indian neighbourhood :-
- A. d. dasarada Moore. Sikkim to Assam. Not rare.
- A. d. ravana Moore. Kashmir to Kumaon. Not rare.
- A. d. barata Rothschild. Myanmar. Rare.
- Wingspan : 100 to 140mm.
- The butterflies resemble the Common Windmill but are usually larger with broader tails.
- The upper hindwing marginal crescent is white or cream-coloured.
- Sexes similar. The female often has a complete discal band of white spots on the hindwing.
The butterfly is considered to be beautiful in appearance.
The Great Windmill is a woodland butterfly. It can often be spotted slowly and gracefully flying across clearings. It flies between 4,000 to 9,000 feet in the spring and summer. Its habits resemble those of the Common Windmill.
The ground colour of the larva varies in shades of grey and has a pattern of black lines. It has an orange osmeterium. The larva has a large number of tubercles arranged in two lateral and two sub-dorsal rows. The third and fourth segments have an additional pair of tubercles. The tubercles all have red tips, except those on the seventh and eighth segments which are almost entirely dirty white and the eleventh segment which has the same colour on just the tips of the tubercles.
Pupa is yellow-green in colour with blue bands. It has an orange protuberance on its back. It is attached to its support by a black body and anal pad. The pupa emits a squeak when touched.
- List of butterflies of India
- List of butterflies of India (Papilionidae)
- Collins, N.M. & Morris, M.G. (1985) Threatened Swallowtail Butterflies of the World. IUCN. ISBN 2-88032-603-6
- Evans, W.H. (1932) The Identification of Indian Butterflies. (2nd Ed), Bombay Natural History Society, Mumbai, India
- Haribal, Meena (1994) Butterflies of Sikkim Himalaya and their Natural History.
- Wynter-Blyth, M.A. (1957) Butterflies of the Indian Region, Bombay Natural History Society, Mumbai, India.
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