Butterflies of the
Family - PAPILIONIDAE
Tribe - PAPILIONINI
India © Adrian Hoskins
There are about 210 species of Papilio
worldwide, about 60 of which occur in the Oriental region. The
Oriental species include several butterflies such as
nephelus that have a black ground colour, and whose hindwings
have large white patches that are normally only seen when the insect
is in flight.
Papilio nephelus and
helenus are very similar, but the
latter is smaller and has red spots on the underside hindwings,
whereas these are yellowish-orange in nephelus.
This species is
found in India, Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos,
Vietnam, China, Taiwan, Malaysia, Sumatra, Sulawesi and Java.
nephelus is found in rainforest and humid deciduous forest at
elevations between sea level and about 800m.
foodplants include Citrus,
and Euodia ( Rutaceae ).
are sometimes seen imbibing mineralised moisture from damp ground, but
both sexes tend to be seen mainly when in flight, or when hovering
while nectaring at flowering bushes.
Papilio nephelus Ultapani,
Assam, India © Adrian Hoskins