Jalmenus aridus Graham & Moulds, 1988
Desert Blue
ZESIINI ,   THECLINAE ,   LYCAENIDAE ,   PAPILIONOIDEA
  
Don Herbison-Evans
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley

These Caterpillars are green with some red and white lines along the body, and a black head and tail. The Caterpillars grow to a length of about 2 cms. They feed by day ont the leaves and flowers of :

  • Punty ( Senna nemophila, CAESALPINIACEAE ), and
  • Kurara ( Acacia tetragonophylla, MIMOSACEAE ).

    The Caterpillars are always attended by ants of the species :

  • Froggatella kirbyi ( DOLICHODERINAE ).

    The upper surfaces of the adult butterflies are dark brown with a large iridescent blue patch near the centre of each wing. The hind wings each have a tail with a black spot beside it on the upper surfaces.

    Underneath, the butterflies are pale brown with arcs of darker spots edged in white, and there are two orange edged black spots underneath beside each hind wing tail. The butterflies have a wingspan of about 2.5 cms.

    This species has only been found in

  • Western Australia in inland desert areas,
    and is considered to be endangered species.


    Further reading :

    Michael F. Braby,
    Butterflies of Australia, CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne 2000, vol. 2, pp. 716-717.

    A.J. Graham & Max S. Moulds,
    A new species of Jalmenus Hubner (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae) from Western Australia.,
    General and Applied Entomology,
    Volume 20 (1988) p. 57.


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    (updated 2 March 2008)