Nesolycaena urumelia (Tindale, 1922)
Arnhemland Blue
(one synonym : Candalides wilkinsi Riley, 1928)
CANDALIDINI ,   POLYOMMATINAE ,   LYCAENIDAE ,   PAPILIONOIDEA
  
Don Herbison-Evans,
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley

Nesolycaena urumelia
male
(Photo: courtesy of Andy Young and Rowan Moore)

The Caterpillars of this species are green with white diagonal lines along the sides. They grow to a length of about 1.5 cms. They feed on :

  • Long-leaved Boronia ( Boronia lanceolata, RUTACEAE ), or
  • Red Boronia ( Boronia lanuginosa, RUTACEAE ).

    The Caterpillars reside under the leaves on which they feed.

    The pupa is formed attached to the underside of a foodplant leaf or in ground debris near the plant. The pupa is green if attached to a leaf, or brown if on the ground. Its length is about 1 cm.

    Nesolycaena urumelia
    female
    (Photo: courtesy of Andy Young and Rowan Moore)

    The adult butterflies of this species are basically bluish-white, with black edges to the upper surfaces. The males have black veins in the centre of the upper surface of each forewing. Underneath, the forewings each have a pair of black spots at the margin, and the hindwings underneath each have a marginal arc of black spots. The butterflies have a wingspan of about 2.5 cms. They have unusually short antennae (with lengths of only about 3 mms.)

    Nesolycaena urumelia
    underside
    (Photo: courtesy of Andy Young and Rowan Moore)

    The eggs are pale green, round, flattened and rough, with a diameter of about 0.6 mm. They are laid singly on leaf stalks or under leaves of a foodplant.

    The species occurs in Australia mainly in

  • Northen Territory in Arnhemland .


    Further reading :

    Michael F. Braby,
    Butterflies of Australia, CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne 2000, vol. 2, pp. 777-778.

    Norman B. Tindale,
    On Australian Rhopolocera,
    Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia,
    Volume 46 (1922), pp. 537-538, and also Plate 31, figs. 1, 2.


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    (updated 28 June 2009, 20 November 2013)