Dark Cerulean
Jamides bochus, Stoll

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Dark Cerulean

A gorgeous small butterfly with a wingspan of 25-30 mm. The upper side of the male is brilliant dark cerulean. In the female it is a similar dark blue, but not metallic. The black border along the termen and apex of the forewing is very variable. The undersides are a gray brown with 5 to 6 rows of discontinuous wavy lines.

Similar species

Status, distribution and habitat
A common butterfly all over the island, all year round, particularly in cultivated areas that grow leguminous plants such as beans, cow pea and mung bean, all of which are used as larval food plants. Acacia plantations established in the hills by the forest department also attract this butterfly, but only as a larval host plant. It is not a serious pest of any of these crops. The species is much commoner in the south of the island than elsewhere.

An active butterfly that flies about a great deal, and because of its dark under sides, they are not easy to follow. However, in bright sun, it leaves a trail of brilliant metallic flashes that is unmistakable. When encountered, it is usually in the company of others of its kind. Males keep busy searching for females around the larval host plants and remain in the vicinity. It is a nectar lover and is frequently seen settled on small wayside wild flowers. It is somewhat skittish and needs to be approached very slowly to see it closely.

Early stages
The eggs are laid on the flower buds of legumes. The larvae feed on the developing pods and are often attended by ants.

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