Hedge Hopper
Baracus vittatus, Felder

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Hedge Hopper

Male Hedge Hopper

Description
A small gray and brown skipper. The distinct veins on the underside hind wing and the pale line that runs from the base of the wing to the outer margin distinguishes it from all other skippers in the island. In both sexes, the extent of greenish gray areas on the upper side of both wings is variable but it is always less extensive in the females. The female has a number of prominent spots around the center of the forewings which are absent in the males.

Similar species
None.

Status, distribution and habitat
It is a very common butterfly, especially above 5000 feet elevation between December and March. It is also locally common at much lower elevations but not below 1500 feet. Sinharaja Forest reserve in the wet zone and the hills around Kandy are two areas where it is locally abundant in the lower elevations. 

Habits
It is a weak flier and moves in and out of the the grassy vegetation in which it lives by fluttering its wings; it stays within a few feet above ground. In its search for mates, nectar or larval host plants, it often settles down to rest. At other times, it simply opens up its wings in the characteristic skipper style and basks in the sun. When it is mud-sipping or retiring for the night, it holds its wings closed and above its body.

Early stages
No records available. The larva probably feeds on grasses.

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