Great Crow
Euploea phaenaneta corus, Fabricius

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The Great Crow nectaring on Eupatorium odoratum

Convex lower margin forewing of
male Great Crow

This is the largest 'Crow' in the island with a wingspan of 90-110 mm. Both sexes are similar.
The wings are a deep coppery bronze color. The outer margins and the median area of the wings have small white spots and streaks which are sometimes a light shade of purple. The hind wing lacks the white closely packed submarginal 'exclamation' marks found in the other 'Crows'. The male is distinguished from the female by the shape of the forewing - the lower margin is convex towards the base of the wing.

Similar species
Brown King Crow, Common Indian Crow, Female Great Eggfly, Male Common Palmfly. Details

Status, distribution and habitat
An insect confined to the wet zone of the island. It inhabits a narrow stretch of land about 25 miles wide along the south-west coast of the island. An uncommon insect found in much smaller numbers than the other Euploeas. Almost always seen at Sinharaja forest. It used to be common in home gardens of Colombo.

The Great Crow has a ponderous and slow flight. Although it searches for food and mates mostly in the forest canopy, it is not uncommon amongst small trees and shrubs. Sometimes, the male may be seen in the same location day after day, often settled on a sunlit leaf along a forest path, basking in the sun or waiting for females to pass by. 

More information about Danaids

Male Great Crow

Early stages
There are no records of the larval food plants in Sri Lanka though it has been bred in the island. In Singapore, the larva feeds on Cerbera odollam, a member of the Apocyanaceae found in coastal areas around estuaries and marshy habitats. In Sri Lanka, the distribution of the Great Crow corresponds with the distribution of Cerbera odollam, suggesting that the larval host plant may be the same.

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