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Appias lyncida

Chocolate Albatross, Appias lyncida[1] is a butterfly of the Family Pieridae, that is, the Yellows and Whites, which is found in South and South East Asia.

Range[edit]

The Chocolate Albatross is found in India, China, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Indochina, Taiwan, Hainan and possibly South China.[2]

In India, the butterfly ranges across South India, peninsular India, Nicobar islands, Sikkim to Assam, and onto Myanmar.[2] In South India, the Chocolate Albatross is to be found along the foot of the Western Ghats. It is found throughout the year in the Nilgiris where it is locally common. In the northern parts of peninsular India it extends into Orissa and North up to Lucknow.[3]

Status[edit]

In India, the northern race of the butterfly is common, while it is local and scarce in other parts of its range.[3]

Description[edit]

Appias lyncida CRW 5231-05.jpg
Male (Dry season form) at Jayanti in Buxa Tiger Reserve in Jalpaiguri district of West Bengal, India.

The Chocolate Albatross has a wingspan of 55 to 70mm. The male is white above with chocolate-brown or black margins, and, bright lemon-yellow below with chocolate-coloured markings. The female is white and densely clouded with dark-brown.[4]

Appias hippoides 540.png

The butterfly shows seasonal dimorphism and is very variable. The detailed descriptions are as follows:[3]

  • WSF:
Male - White above, with bluish costa and termen inwardly-edged with black teeth-like markings on the forewing. The hindwing is similarly toothed on the termen, which has a bluish inward border. The UNH is bright yellow and is outwardly bordered with dark chocolate.
Female - Black UPF with four white streaks on the disc. Blackish UPH except for the whitish discal area. The UNH may be yellowish or whitish and have broad dark band at the termen.
  • DSF: Smaller.
Male - The male has narrower black margins above.
Female - Similar above to the WSF, but with more extensive white markings.

Habits[edit]

The Chocolate Albatross is a forest butterfly and prefers rainy highlands, up to a level of 3000 ft. Flying strongly and swiftly close to the ground, the Albatross is frequently found in jungle clearings and along stream banks. The males are often found circling around trees and bushes. The Chocolate Albatross often mudpuddles, sometimes in large numbers. The butterfly occasionally visits flowers and has been recorded to visit Verbena flowers in Kodagu.[3]

Life cycle[edit]

The larvae have been recorded on Crataeva religiosa, Capparis roxburghii and Capparis heyneana.[2]

Picture gallery[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Card for lyncida in LepIndex. Accessed 05 Sep 2007.
  2. ^ a b c Marrku Savela's Website on Lepidoptera Page on Appias genus.
  3. ^ a b c d Wynter-Blyth, M.A. (1957) Butterflies of the Indian Region, pg 428-429.
  4. ^ Kunte, Krushnamegh. (2000) Butterflies of Peninsular India and China, ser no 23, pp 100-101.
  • Evans, W.H. (1932) The Identification of Indian Butterflies. (2nd Ed), Bombay Natural History Society, Mumbai, India
  • Gaonkar, Harish (1996) Butterflies of the Western Ghats, India (including Sri Lanka) - A Biodiversity Assessment of a threatened mountain system. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society.
  • Kunte,Krushnamegh (2005) Butterflies of Peninsular India. Universities Press, Hyderabad, India.
  • Wynter-Blyth, M.A. (1957) Butterflies of the Indian Region, Bombay Natural History Society, Mumbai, India.
  • Arun, P. R. (2000) Seasonality and abundance of insects with special reference to butterflies (Lepidoptera: Rhopalocera) in a Moist deciduous forest of Siruvani, Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, SouthIndia Ph.D Thesis, Bharathiar University, Coimbatore. 236p.
  • Haribal, M. (1992) The butterflies of Sikkim Himalaya and their natural history, 217, Sikkim Nature Conservation Foundation, Gangtok, Sikkim.

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