Crimson Rose

Crimson Rose (Atrophaneura hector) is a large swallowtail butterfly belonging to the subgenus Pachliopta (Roses) of the Red-bodied Swallowtails (genus Atrophaneura).

Male Upperside black. Fore wing with a broad white interrupted band from the subcostal nervure opposite the origin of veins 10 and 11, extended obliquely to the tornus, and a second short pre-apical similar band; both bands composed of detached irregularly indented broad streaks in the interspaces. Hind wing with a diseal posteriorly strongly curved series of seven crimson spots followed by a subterminal series of crimson lunules. Cilia black alternated with white. Underside: fore whig dull brownish black, hind wing black; markings as on the npporsido, but the crimson spots and crescentic markings on the hind wing larger. Antennae, thorax and abdomen abovo at base, black; head and rest of the abdomen bright crimson; beneath: iho palpi, the sides of the thorax and abdomen crimson.

Female. Similar, the discal series of spots and subterminal lunules much duller, pale crimson irrorated with black scales; in some specimens the anterior spots and lunules almost white barely tinged with crimson; abdomen above with the black colour extended further towards the apex.No geographic races have been described.

It is a very striking looking tailed butterfly with prominent white bands on its forewings. Like the Common Rose, this butterfly is also very interesting for the amateur naturalist to observe. The Crimson Rose is very fond of flowers especially Lantana. Nectar appears to be essential for the butterfly and a higher nectar intake is thought to increase egg production.

Close to the ground, the flight of the Crimson Rose is slow and fluttering but steady. At greater heights, it flies faster and stronger. It basks with its wings wings spread flat, sometimes in small congregations at heights of 10 to 15 metres up in the trees.

The butterfly often roosts for the night in large companies on the twigs and branches of trees and shrubs, sometimes accompanied by a few Common Mormons. When resting the butterfly draws its forewings halfway between the hindwings. The butterfly sleeps on slanting outstretched branches or twigs of trees or bushes.Aposematism and mimicry Common Mormon Papilio polytes (Female romulus form) mimic of Crimson Rose

The red body, slow peculiar flight, bright colouration and pattern of the wings are meant to indicate to predators that this butterfly is inedible, being well protected by the poisons it has sequestered from its larval food plant. Its flight and behaviour is much like that of the Common Mormon. Like that butterfly, it too is inedible and rarely attacked by predators. This has led to this butterfly also being mimicked by a female morph of the Common Mormon (Papilio polytes), in this case, the female form romulus.

Migration
The most striking aspect aspect of the butterflies behaviour is its strong migratory tendencies. During the peak of its season, several thousands of Crimson Roses can be found congregating and then they begin migrating to other areas.

Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Arthropoda
Class:Insecta
Order:Lepidoptera
Family:Papilionidae
Genus:Atrophaneura
Subgenus:(Pachliopta)
Species:A. (P.) hector

Information Source : Wiki

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