Monday, 20 March 2017

261. Euploea tulliolus dehaani (The Dwarf Crow)

Number: 261
Family: Nymphaliidae
Sub-Family: Danaiinae
Species: Euploea tulliolus dehaani Lucas, 1853
Common name(s): The Dwarf Crow
Photography locations: Tam Dao foothills (Vinh Phuc Prov.), Ba Vi N.P. (Hanoi), Hanoi City

Euploea tulliolus is distributed widely from the eastern part of the Southeast Asian mainland and the Malay Peninsula through the Philippines to Papua New Guinea and the eastern coast of Australia.
Subspecies dehaani ranges through Indochina, S.China, Hainan.

This wide-ranging species can be seen in a large variety of forest habitats, at different elevations.

Congregation of E. tulliolus dehaani, one individual with wings fully outstretched (Tam Dao, September 2015)

E. tulliolus is a very small Euploea species (FW longer less than 45mm)
Note FW apex rounded, underside paler brown, spots all white

Euploea tulliolus dehaani on Bidens alba (Hanoi, February 2017)

Same individual, in flight

 E. tulliolus dehaani, female, upperside, voucher specimen from Tam Dao (900m asl)
UpF washed with an iridescent blue or violet colour that invades the white submarginal spots

Same specimen, underside

Butterflies of Vietnam, Vol. 3: Nymphalidae: Danainae, Amathusiinae (A.L. Monastyrskii, 2011)

260. Mycalesis cf. adamsonii (The Watson's Bushbrown)

Number: 260
Family: Nymphaliidae
Sub-Family: Satyriinae
Species: Mycalesis cf. adamsonii Watson, 1897
Common name(s): The Watson's Bushbrown
Photography location: Ba Vi N.P. (Hanoi)

Mycalesis inopia is one of the 3 vietnamese Mycalesis (with adamsonii and inopia) in which Up of both wings don't exhibit ocelli.

Underwings of Mycalesis inopia appears to be very similar to that of M. adamsonii. Both show a broad white postdiscal band suffused with violet on both wings bearing the same arrangement of ocelli. But according to me (to be confirmed), area from base to postdical band is blackish in inopia wheras it appears somewhat brown ochraceous in adamsonii.

Identification is easy with voucher specimens: M. inopia show black Up (brown in adamsonii) and the male lacks a brand on the UpF (brand overlaid by a hair tuft in space 1b in adamsonii).

Mycalesis cf. adamsonii, Ba Vi (May 2016) - without flash

Mycalesis cf. adamsonii, Ba Vi (June 2016) - with flash

Saturday, 18 March 2017

259. Atrophaneura aidoneus aidoneus (The Lesser Batwing)

Number: 259
Family: Papilioniidae
Sub-Family: Papilioniinae
Species: Atrophaneura aidoneus aidoneus (Doubleday, 1845)
Common name(s): The Lesser Batwing
Photography location: Huu Lien Nature Reserve (Lang Son Prov.)

"Red-bodied Swallowtails" are butterflies in the Papilionidae that belong to the genera Atrophaneura (3 species in Vietnam), Byasa (8), Losaria (1) and Pachliopta (1). Many species show aposematism (“warning coloration”) and serve as models for Batesian mimicry.

The genus Atrophaneura comprises around 50 species, of which 3 are currently known to occur in Vietnam - A. zaleucus zaleucus, A. varuna astorion & A. aidoneus aidoneus
A. varuna and A. aidoneus show very similar color pattern. A. zaleucus (previously treated as subspecies of A. varuna) is unmistakable with its white patches on HW.

Atrophaneura aidoneus, male, feeding feeding in Lantana thickets adjacent to forest (Huu Lien, October 2016)

 Same specimen than above
In both sexes of  A. aidoneus the upperside HW is uniformly coloured, where in all subspecies of A. varuna the cell is obviously darker than the rest of the hindwing (Cotton & Racheli, 2006)

Upperside of 2 specimens of A. varuna astorion for comparison (Huu Lien, October 2016)

258. Arhopala birmana birmana (The Burmese Bushblue)

Number: 258
Family: Lycaeniidae
Sub-Family: Thecliinae
Species: Arhopala birmana birmana (Moore, 1883)
Common name(s): The Burmese Bushblue
Photography location: Hanoi City

I found a specimen of this species in a very unexpected area, namely the Hanoi's Botanical gardens! Probably not migrant or vagrant but adventive specimen (i.e. did not come there with its own strength). Certainly be brought in a batch of forest plants.
Arhopala birmana birmana is recorded in Myanmar, N.Thailand, Laos, Vietnam (N. & C.), S.China. Subspecies asakurae occurs in Taiwan, subsp. hiurai in Palawan (Philippines).

Arhopala birmana birmana, male, upperside, voucher specimen from Hanoi City (August 2016)
ID credit: A. Monastyrskii

Same specimen, underside

257. Curetis bulis bulis (The Bright Sunbeam)

Number: 257
Family: Lycaeniidae
Sub-Family: Curetiinae
Species: Curetis bulis bulis (Westwood, 1852)
Common name(s): The Bright Sunbeam
Photography location: Cuc Phuong N.P. (Ninh Binh Prov.)

The genus Curetis comprises of 18 known species variously distributed from India and Sri Lanka to China, Japan, the Philippines, Malaysia, Sumatra, Borneo, Sulawesi, Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. These butterflies are known as "Sunbeams", due to the brilliant metallic coppery-red uppersides of the males, which glint in the sunshine. Females are earthy brown with large suffused white patches on the upperside, and can easily be mistaken in flight for small Pierids. The undersides of all species are silvery-white with small black dots.

Eight Curetis species are currently known in Vietnam viz. bulis, saronis, santana, tagalica, tonkina, metayei, acuta & dentata (Monastyrskii & Devyatkin, 2016), the first one being the most widespread.

Curetis bulis bulis, male, puddling on the forest floor (Cuc Phuong, July 2016)

Voucher specimen, male, upperside, from Cuc Phuong (July 2016)
Male UpF and UpH is orange with broad black borders, the orange discal area on FW not reaching vein 6, usually not extending above vein 5

Same specimen, underside

256. Mycalesis mucianus mucianus (The South China Bushbrown)

Number: 256
Family: Nymphaliidae
Sub-Family: Satyriinae
Species: Mycalesis mucianus mucianus Fruhstorfer, 1908
Common name(s): The South China Bushbrown
Photography location: Ba Vi (Hanoi), Tam Dao (Vinh Phuc Prov.)

Recently this species was known as M. zonata Matsumuza, 1909.
The nominate subsp. occurs in S.E. China, N. & C. Vietnam (to Gia Lai Prov.); the subsp. zonata, in Taiwan.

 Mycalesis mucianus, Tam Dao foothills (November 2016)
Note FW with apex truncated

Another specimen, from Ba Vi foothills (April 2017)

255. Heteropsis malsara (The White-line Bushbrown)

Number: 255
Family: Nymphaliidae
Sub-Family: Satyriinae
Species: Heteropsis malsara (Moore, 1858)
Common name(s): The White-line Bushbrown
Photography location: Ba Vi foothills (Hanoi)

This species was earlier considered to be part of the genus Mycalesis but phylogenetic studies have re-classified them in genus Heteropsis (Kodandaramaiah et al., 2010).

Heteropsis malsara occurs in N. India, Burma, Thailand, Laos, N. & C. Vietnam.

Heteropsis malsara (December 2016, Ba Vi foothills, secondary vegetation) 
Note underwings basal and discal areas more or less finely striated, the wide postdical band on both wings

Same individual, upperwings
Note the prominent whitish discal band on UpF

Another specimen - wet season form

Dry season form (March 2018, Ba Vi foothills)

Voucher specimen from Ba Vi, underside (April 2017)

Same specimen, upperside