(previously known as Candalides cyprotus)
CANDALIDINI, POLYOMMATINAE, LYCAENIDAE, PAPILIONOIDEA
(Photo: courtesy of Roger Grund, Butterfly Conservation South Australia Inc.)
This Caterpillar is green with pink and blue tubercles each having a black bristle. It has been found feeding on various plants in PROTEACEAE, including :
The pupa is black with flanges each side of the abdomen, and has a length of about 1.3 cms. It may be found in the debris at the foot of the foodplant.
The female adults are dark brown on top, with a large blue patch near the centre of each forewing. The males are more uniformly purple over both fore and hind wings, with a dark trident mark near the centre of each forewing. Underneath, they both are a pale fawn colour with arcs of brown carets and dots under both fore and hind wings. The butterflies have a wing span of about 3 cms.
The eggs are green, dome-shaped, and covered with a microscopic white polygonal net. Their diameter is about 0.7 mm. They are laid singly on the buds or stalk of a foodplant.
Males are known to 'hilltop', whereas females are more secretive in their habits. Populations are isolated, though common where they occur. The species occurs in Australia as the subspecies :
This species is anomalous, and has been placed in its own genus Cyprotides by some taxonomists.
Further reading :
Michael F. Braby,
Butterflies of Australia,
CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne 2000, vol. 2, pp. 762-763.
Arthur Sidney Olliff,
A new butterfly of the family Lycenidae from the Blue Mountains,
Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales,
Volume 10, Part 4 (1886), pp. 716-717.
Gerald Edward Tite,
A revision of the genus Candalides and allied genera (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae),
Bulletin of the British Museum (Natural History) Entomology,
Volume 14, Part 5 (1963), p. 215., No. ii.
(updated 30 July 2009, 21 September 2013, 12 March 2015, 27 July 2020, 5 September 2021)