Sunday, August 10, 2008

The Common Imperial

It was hospital run on the weekend again and I ended up driving from SGH to Alexandra Hospital for some R&R. I was in search of butterflies in the butterfly park at Alexandra Hospital. The butterflies were there but I couldn't settle down to concentrate on photographing the butterflies around me. I did photograph the Common Imperial and added this species to my growing collection.
Note the difference in the tail lengths of the two butterflies, although they are of the same species.The Common Imperial is a long-tailed Lycaenid and is very rare in Singapore. It frequents the forested areas and flies in the same fashion as its more common relative, the Branded Imperial. The wings above are brownish purple in the male and dark brown in the female. The underside is white, with most of the fore wing and apical area of the hind wing shaded orange. The butterfly has two tails on each hind wing, with the one along vein 2 being the longer - attaining a length of up to 25 mm.

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