Don Herbison-Evans (
(Photo: courtesy of Bob Miller and Ian Hill)
This Caterpillar is pale green and hairy, with a pale edged dark dorsal band.
It lives on the underside of a leaf of its food plant, which can be :
In captivity: the caterpillars are antagonistic to each other, and inclined to be cannabalistic.
The pupa is cream with brown markings and sparse hairs. Its length is about 1 cm. It is formed attached to the underside of a foodplant leaf.
The male adults are blue on top with a large white patch on each hindwing. The females are black with a large white patch on each wing.
Underneath, both sexes are white with a black border. Along the underside of the costa of each forewing there is an iridescent pale green stripe. Along the margin of the underside of each hindwing there is a row of black spots each ringed in pale iridescent green. The adults have a wingspan of about 3 cms.
The eggs are white, round flattened and rough. The are laid typically in ones or twos by a vein under a leaf of a young foodplant.
The species occurs in
and over the eastern coastal areas of Australia including
Three subspecies have been recognised in Australia, although their standing is controversial :
Further reading :
Michael F. Braby,
Butterflies of Australia, CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne 2000, vol. 2, pp. 794-795.
(updated 2 June 2008, 23 November 2013)