Indian Cupid
Everes lacturnus parrhasius, Fabricius

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Mating pair with male on left


A medium sized highly variable insect with a wingspan of 22-27 mm. The sexes are dissimilar on the upper sides. The male is uniform bright blue above with narrow black borders along the margins. There is considerable variation in the size of males though very little in color or markings. Some males are as small as 15 mm.

In the female, the blue is mostly towards the center of the wings, the bands on the outer and front margins are black. In some specimens, the blue is entirely lacking and the background color is a dark brown, while in others the blue is replaced by a grayish blue and the borders of the outer and front margins are brown.

The background color of the underside of both sexes is a shade of pale brown. The markings are distinctive and are mostly confined to the distal end of the wings where it forms a single band on each wing. The two black tornal spots are always crowned by bright orange.

Similar species
See Dark Grass Blue.

Status, distribution and habitat
It is an uncommon but widely distributed butterfly from sea level up to 6000 feet and is seen throughout the year. It is commonest in the wet zone where it is most frequently encountered along forest paths, open glades adjoining forests, as well as in cultivated lands and home gardens. It is sometimes very common in rubber plantations where leguminous cover crops are grown.

It is a weak flier and stays close to the ground or low bushes where it will often settle down. It rests with its wings partly open, particularly in the early morning hours when it is basking in the sun. Both sexes are attracted to small wayside flowers. The males visit wet soil.

Early stages
The larvae feed on Leguminosae.

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