Butterflies of the Indian subcontinent
Yellow Orange-tip
Ixias pyrene  LINNAEUS, 1764
subfamily - PIERINAE
Ixias pyrene Ultapani, Assam, India  Adrian Hoskins
There are 10 species in the genus Ixias, all of which are Oriental in distribution. Males have orange wing tips and broad dark brown margins, on either a yellow or white ground colour, depending on the species. Females are similar but have more extensive dark markings, and in some species e.g. flavipennis and paluensis they lack the orange patches. The underside of the wings in both sexes of all species is yellow, with a band of dark spots. The latter are much more pronounced in the wet season forms.

Several Ixias species are endemic to islands in south-east Asia e.g. kuehni on Wetar, flavipennis on Sumatra, piepersii and paluensis on Sulawesi, and vollenhovii on Timor.

Ixias pyrene is the commonest and most widespread member of the genus. It is distributed from Pakistan to Taiwan, Malaysia, Borneo and the Philippines.

Ixias pyrene Simpock Khola, West Sikkim, India  Adrian Hoskins

This species inhabits rainforest, humid deciduous forest, dry forest, Acacia scrub, and savannah / woodland mosaics at elevations between sea level and about 800m.
The larval foodplant is Capparis ( Capparidaceae ).
Adult behaviour
Early in the morning and late in the afternoon the adults often bask on foliage, with the wings half open or fully outspread. If disturbed they react by flying into long grasses or up into trees. During the heat of the day males imbibe moisture from damp ground, and both sexes nectar from a wide range of herbaceous flowers.
Ixias pyrene, Buxa, West Bengal, India  Adrian Hoskins


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