I wasnt even looking for the butterflies....

January 2, 2010

I realize that Namdapha must be a sort of butterly heaven during the season…because I went out of season, I wasn’t even looking for any, and yet I just could not resist clicking some of the common ones!

Let’s just start with the beautiful HIMALAYAN JESTER:

himalayan jester 231209 deban

the COMMON RING: common ring dibru 201209 the COMMON TIT: common tit deban 231209 the FLUFFY TIT: fluffy tit dibru 201209 an "open" PUFFIN: puffin open namdapha 231209 the same butterfly, with its wings closed: puffin closed nam 231209 I learnt why the COMMON CASTOR was called so, after seeing them in their hundreds amongst the castor plants (from which castor oil is made)! castor namdapha 221209 the INDIAN RED ADMIRAL: indian red admiral namdapha 231209 the METALLIC CERULEAN (this one really did have a lovely blue metallic sheen as it flew about, so naturally I could not get a single shot of it with its wings open. Show me a photographer trying to catch a flitting butterfly with a camera, and I will show you a frustrated person.) metallic cerulean 231209 the LIME EMIGRANT: lime emigrant 231209 the PURPLE SAPPHIRE (what a lovely and tough name!) purple sapphire namdapha 221209 this is another of the Sapphires: some kind of sapphire namdapha 221209 this was one of the "easy" (that is, seen earlier, often enough to be remembered!) ones...the WHITE ORANGE-TIP: white orange-tip namdapha 231209 I cannot understand why so many butterflies, such light and delicate creatures that live on sunshine and flowers and in utter peace, should be named after ranks in the armed forces. HOW can associate these creatures of light and air with war? But so it it is. Here is the SERGEANT: sergeant 231209 thank goodness, this one is named after PUNCHINELLO, one of the characters of the Harlequin opera: punchinellow 231209 sometimes we get back to the flowers, as with this GREY PANSY: grey pansy namdapha 231209 and sometimes the description is so true...this is the COMMON WANDERER: common wanderer namdapha 231209 but whoever called this one a PEACOCK PANSY has never seen a peacock, even though the "eyes" may have brought the bird to mind: peacock pansy nam 231209 it was amazing how, as I walked, the butterflies folded themselves and just became leaves! Here's that self-same Peacock Pansy, with its wings closed...isn't it a dry, sere leaf? peacock pansy closed namdapha 231209 some more flights of fancy inspired some butterflies being called Tigers, as with this CHESTNUT TIGER: chestnut tiger 231209 I could not find the id of this one: Photobucket here's the COMMON HEDGE BLUE: common hedge blue 231209 back to the bird names...and where there is any chocolate in the CHOCOLATE ALBATROSS, I don't know! chocolate albatross namdapha 231209 this one's a COMMANDER... commander deban 231209 My guide, Bidyut, said this one might be an ORANGE-AND-BLACK ROYAL but Karthik says it's more likely to be a RED FLASH: red flash butterfly Here it is with the orange colour not showing: 231209 namdapha red flash Here's Bidyut picking up the wing of an unfortunate butterfly, which has probably become some bird's lunch: vidyut picking up b'fly wing namdapha 231209 This is the GRASS JEWEL, which Bidyut told me was the smallest butterfly in the world! grass jewel smallest b'fly 231209 Some of the MOTHS were lovely too; here's some variety of SCOPULA MOTH (thanks for the id, Kiran!) : luna moth namdapha 231209 and a HAWK MOTH: hawk moth deban 241209 here's a moth case, after the pupa has matured and flown out: moth case after pupa has gone deban forest guest house 231209 We were looking at a dead Moth on the path, when Bidyut, our guide, cracked a great bilingual pun. "Look," he cried, " 'mauth' (death in Hindi) has truly come to this Moth!" and a few un-id DRAGONFLIES: un id dragonfly 231209 un id dragonfly 231209


white striped baron

I am not sure of many of the id’s and would appreciate any help or corrections, please!

I have also decided that instead of hunting high and low for id’s, I am just going to call these butterflies “Krishnamurthy”, “Subramaniam”, “Vahini” and so on!

I can only imagine what it must be like during the butterfly season in this remote corner of India!