02 August 2014

Life History of the Long Brand Bush Brown

Life History of Long Brand Bush Brown (Mycalesis visala phamis)

Butterfly Biodata:
Genus: Mycalesis Hübner, 1818
Species: visala Moore, 1858
Subspecies: phamis Talbot & Corbet, 1939
Wingspan of Adult Butterfly: 40-50mm
Caterpillar Local Host Plants: Isachne globosa (Poaceae), Ottochloa nodosa (Poaceae).

Physical Description of Adult Butterfly:
On the upperside, the wings are dull brown with an obscure yellow-ringed ocellus in space 2 of the forewing, and two obscure ocelli in spaces 2 and 3 of the hindwing. On the underside, both wings are pale brown in ground colour and have a whitish post-discal band. There is a series of ringed ocelli in the submarginal area on both wings. At times, a rare dry season form could be observed in Singapore where these ocelli are much reduced in size. The male has a yellowish and long (reaches the post-discal line) sex brand above the dorsum (in space 1b) on the forewing. In the hindwing, the post-discal line is slightly curved outward in spaces 4 and 5, and there is a dark brown indentation line stretching down to vein 1b.

Field Observations of Butterfly Behaviour:
The Long Brand Bush Brown is moderately common in Singapore with adults typically found flying low amongst grasses in the nature reserves, wasteland as well as urban parks and gardens. As with other Satyrinae members, the adults fly in an erratic and jerky manner as their wings are closed for a relatively long period during flights.