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Butterflies of Thailand, Malaysia & Borneo
Common Dartlet
Oriens gola  MOORE, 1887
Family - HESPERIIDAE
subfamily - HESPERIINAE
Tribe -

Oriens gola, Bukit Tapah, West Malaysia  Adrian Hoskins
Introduction
The Hesperiinae are a vast subfamily, characterised by their wide heads, large eyes, thick bodies, and their habit of basking with their forewings held at a 45 angle, and hindwings held horizontally. The caterpillars of all species feed on monocotyledons - grasses, palms, orchids etc.
There are about 400 Hesperiinae in the Oriental region, of which 182 have so far been recorded from peninsular Malaysia. Among these there are dozens from the genera Salanoemia, Telicota, Taractrocera, Potanthus and Oriens which share a similar upperside pattern of broad yellowish-orange streaks on a dark brown ground colour. Distinguishing these genera, and the numerous species within them, relies on close examination of the configuration of the markings on both wing surfaces, and reference to text keys and diagrams.
In Oriens the post-discal orange band is united with the lower cell spot on the upperside forewing - a feature which distinguishes them from Telicota and Potanthus.
In Malaysia there are 3 Oriens species - gola, paragola and goloides. On the underside hindwings paragola has a dark brown ground colour. In both gola and goloides this is replaced by yellow, peppered finely with black. These 2 species can be distinguished by reference to the veins, which are dark in goloides and yellow in gola.
Oriens gola is found in India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, peninsular Malaysia, Borneo and Sumatra.
Habitats
This species is found in sunny glades and clearings in secondary forest and plantations, and along roadsides, riverbanks and other sheltered grassy habitats at elevations between sea level and about 400 metes.
Lifecycle
The egg is dome-shaped, shiny and straw coloured. It is laid singly on the upperside of leaves of the foodplants.
The caterpillar is whitish dorsally, suffusing into pale green below the spiracles. The body segments are wrinkled vertically, and densely covered with tiny tubercles, giving the skin a rough texture. The head is pale yellowish-green, with a narrow black diagonal stripe across each cheek. The foodplants according to Corbet & Pendlebury are the grasses Imperata and Paspalum ( Poaceae ).
The chrysalis is formed within a tube constructed from a rolled grass blade. It is a bright translucent green colour, with 3 thin white stripes along the back. The eyes protrude slightly, and a white spike projects from the head.
Adult behaviour
Both sexes can commonly be seen darting about in the sunshine in grassy habitats, often settling on low herbage to rest, usually keeping their wings held erect. In weak or hazy sunlight they bask in the characteristic Hesperiine posture.
 

 

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