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Common Name : Glassy Tiger     -       Scientific Name : Parantica aglea       -       Other Name : Palingu Gomara (S)
Nelum Wila
01/16/2016
Nelum Wila
01/16/2016

This is a slow flying butterfly, which belongs to the Danaidae family. Two subspecies of this butterfly have been recognized. The nominate subspecies P.a. aglea is found in Sri Lanka and India (Western Ghats north to Pune and the niligiris). Subspecies P.a. melanoides is found in the Himalayas from Kashmire to Nepal, Assam, Chittagong and Burma.

The conservation status of this species is regarded as “Least Concerned” (National Red List 2012).

This is a species protected under the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance as amended by Act No. 22 of 2009.

As with all slow moving butterflies of this family this species is poisonous to its predators such as birds. Thus it would fly at a leisurely speed close to the ground from one feeding plant to the other. The females lay their eggs on vines belonging to the Tylophora genus, which contain white latex including Kiri Anguna (S) Tylophora pauciflora.

Even though it is mentioned that this species occurs in the southern part of the island I have seen it in small numbers in the rest of the country including the north. I have seen this species at Sinharaja, Morapitiya, Kitulgala, Kurunegala, Wasgomuwa National Park, Colombo, Kotte, Arankele, Nawadankulama, Nilgala and at Hantana. The highest altitude at which I have seen it has been at Corbett’s Gap in the Knuckles Forest Reserve at 1540 meters.

This is not a common species at Wilpattu. I have seen it only once so far at Nelum Wila.