Delias aruna Boisduval 1832
Orange Jezabel
PIERINAE ,   PIERIDAE ,   PAPILIONOIDEA
  
Don Herbison-Evans
( donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley

The Caterpillars of this species are brown with long white hairs, and feed gregariously in a loose silken web on various Mistletoes such as :

  • Bald Mistletoe ( Dendrophthoe glabrescens, LORANTHACEAE ).

    Delias aruna
    (Specimen: courtesy of the The Australian Museum)

    The pupa is orange with black knobs on, and has a length of about 2.5 cms.

    Delias aruna
    Male
    (Specimen: courtesy of the The Australian Museum)

    The upper surfaces of the wings of the adult male butterfly are yellow to orange, with a black forewing tips, and a narrow black band around the hindwing edges.

    Delias aruna
    Female
    (Specimen: courtesy of the The Australian Museum)

    The upper surfaces of the wings of the adult female butterfly are black, with an orange basal area, and some obscure orange spotts around the forewing tips.

    Delias aruna
    Underside, Male
    (Specimen: courtesy of the The Australian Museum)

    The undersides of both sexes are dark brown. The male has a yellow mark on each forewing and a scarlet mark near the base of each hindwing. The female has arcs of yellow spots around the margin of the undersides of all four wings. Both sexes have wingspans of about 7 cms.

    Delias aruna
    Papua New Guinea 1966

    Various subspecies are found on

  • New Guinea and adjacent islands.

    In Australia, only the sub species inferna Butler, 1871, is found, in

  • Queensland, on the Cape York Peninsula.


    Further reading :

    Michael F. Braby,
    Butterflies of Australia, CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne 2000, vol. 1, pp. 333-334.

    G.A. Wood,
    The life history of Delias aruna inferna Butler (Lepidoptera: Pieridae: Pierinae), Queensland Naturalist, Volume 35 (1997), pp. 1-3.


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    (updated 1 January 2012)