Common Map (Cyrestis thyodamas)
The Common Map is a species of butterflies belonging to the nymphalid group and spread across several regions across the Indian subcontinent, and a few other countries. They also have a subspecies in Taiwan.
Description and Identification
The mature larva is bright green in color with a brown vertical line running across its body. There are four typical horn-like protrusions on the body, with two being on the forehead, one above the thorax region, while another one near the anus. The caterpillar feeds on its shell as it hatches out of its egg.
The chrysalis is light brown to orange with light gray or black spots on the back – a shape and pattern that make them look like a dry leaf hanging from their host plant. This is primarily for camouflage purpose.
Sexual Dimorphism: Not present
Color and Appearance: When the wings are open, they display chocolate brown lines running randomly on a white base, with the inner corners of both the primary and secondary wings showing an orange patch. When the wings are closed, they display a similar pattern and color scheme, but in a much fainter variation.
Average wingspan: 58–70 mm
Flight pattern: Slow and erratic
Light greenish yellow in color; either domed-shaped or conical
|Distribution||In India’s Himalayan region to Travancore, parts of eastern India, China, Japan, and Taiwan (subspecies)|
|Habitat||Forest edges, sunny fields and meadows, muddy swamps with tall vegetation|
|Host plants||Several species belonging to the genus Ficus|
|Adult diet||Flower nectar|
Did You Know?
- They migrate to southern India, where they have been noticed puddling in the mud in large flocks.