(previously known as Narathura micale)
ARHOPALINI, THECLINAE, LYCAENIDAE, PAPILIONOIDEA
(Photo: courtesy of Wes Jenkinson)
The Caterpillars of this species are green with broad brown and narrow yellow lines along the back. There is a brown plate on the prothorax. The Caterpillars are attended by the green ants :
The caterpillars have been reported as feeding on the foliage of various trees including :
When not feeding, the Caterpillars rest in a curled leaf or the entrance to the ants nest.
The pupa is formed in similar situations. It is green with brown markings.
On top, the males are an iridescent blue with narrow black margins.
The females are an iridescent greenish-blue. with a broad black border around the edges of the wings. Both adults have a short black tail at the tornus of each hindwing.
Underneath, both are brown with arcs of light and dark spots. The butterflies have a wingspan of about 4 cms.
The eggs are pale blue and round. They are laid singly on young shoots of a foodplant that has a nest of the attendant ant species.
The species is recognised as comprising about 16 sub-species found in
as well in Australia where it has been suggested that there are three races :
but later studies have shown that these may just be clinal variations of just one or two subspecies.
Further reading :
Description des Insectes,
Voyage au Pôle Sud et dans l'Océanie, sur les corvettes l'Astrolabe et la Zélée,
Volume 4 (1853), p. 399, and also Plate 3, figs 11, 12.
Michael F. Braby,
Butterflies of Australia, CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne 2000, vol. 2, pp. 690-691.
William Chapman Hewitson,
Specimen of a Catalogue of Lycaenidae in the British Museum,
1862, p. 4, No. 16, and also Plate 2, figs. 7-9.
(updated 20 December 2009)