Butterflies of Thailand, Malaysia & Borneo
Agava Skipper
Pirdana distanti  STAUDINGER, 1889
subfamily - HESPERIINAE
Tribe -

Pirdana distanti distanti, Taman Negara, West Malaysia  Adrian Hoskins
The genus Pirdana is endemic to the Oriental region and comprises of 4 known species, albicornis, hyela, distanti and fusca, the last of these being discovered as recently as 1983.
All Pirdana species have dark uppersides with a metallic bluish-green sheen, and golden-yellow scales around the tornus on the hindwings. Additionally they all have deep ruby eyes.
The commonest and most widespread species is hyela which is found from Myanmar to Sulawesi. P. albicornis is endemic to Borneo, and fusca is endemic to Samar in the Philippines.
Pirdana distanti is found in West Malaysia, Sumatra and Borneo.
This is a very rare species which is confined to primary rainforest at altitudes between about 100-300 metres. The individual depicted above was photographed in dark swampy forest near Kuala Tahan in Taman Negara national park.
The only details I have of the early stages are that the larva is "green with black markings" and feeds on Dracaena and Cordyline ( Agavaceae ).
Adult behaviour
The butterflies are probably mainly crepuscular in habit. The butterfly depicted was disturbed from rest in the late afternoon. It had a rapid whirring flight and was very alert and difficult to approach - while attempting to follow it I managed to trip over a tree root, slide down a slope into a muddy pool, and gather a few cuts and bruises, losing sight of the butterfly on several occasions !


Contact  /  About me

Butterfly-watching holidays

Trip reports

UK latest sightings

Frequently asked questions

Strange but true !

Taxonomy & Evolution



Enemies of butterflies

Survival strategies

Migration & dispersal

Habitats - UK / Palaearctic

Habitats - Tropical rainforests

Butterfly world census

Butterflies of the World :

British Isles


Amazon & Andes

North America

temperate Asia


Indian subcontinent

Malaysia & Borneo

Papua New Guinea

Australia & N.Z.

Insects of Britain & Europe

Insects of Amazonia

Moths of the Andes

Saturniidae - Silkmoths

Caterpillars of the World

Butterfly Photography

Recommended Books



Code of practice

Copyright - text & images

Copyright - text & images






All photographs, artwork, text & website design are the property of Adrian Hoskins ( unless otherwise stated ) and are protected by Copyright. Photographs or text on this website must not be reproduced in part or in whole or published elsewhere without prior written consent of Adrian Hoskins / learnaboutbutterflies.com

Site hosted by Just Host