First Butterfly Walk of 2020 to Sihagad on January 12, 2020

Place:
Sihagad Valley, Pune

Time:
10:15 am to 3:15 pm

Members present:
@pavandamoor, @swanand and @savita

Pavanji messaged a day before the walk, “are we going tomorrow?”
Besides me, we had only one confirmation. I thought about the canceled plans of the past and said, “yes”
That yes worked wonders for us yesterday at Sihagad Valley. It was one and half hour ride for me from Shaniwarwada. The bus frequency is pretty good. Pavanji would have boarded the same bus from his area but we missed it by a couple of minutes.
It was 10 am and Maheshji was not around, no message until then so we started walking ahead. The range issue was there at the starting point. Could not call/msg then. Little ahead the phone worked and received a message from Swanand. He decided around 9 am to join us. So in between guiding Swanand and responding to Maheshji’s msg on WA, we photographed our first records of a cerulean and common hedge blue, male.
We reached an open field that was full of wild growths so plenty of nectar plants and plenty of butterflies to see. The common sailer, cerulean chocolate pansy, wanderer, grey pansy, painted lady, angled pierrots and many more were seen in large numbers on every patch we moved.
I was fooled by the dry season form of the angled pierrot, which I thought was an abnormal individual. Later when we kept seeing all individuals in similar forms, we realized, it’s a DSF, not an abnormality.
Most of the butterflies were in their DSFs.
We did not have a wish list as such. Were expecting a nawab maybe a blue oakleaf. Did not get to see either but the bumper was observing a silver streak blue! A few days back Dalvi Ji has posted a dead butterfly record from Bhor. I think this may be the first sighting/reporting from Pune city. (https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/37551933)

Another exciting moment was clicking the common castor eggs. Swanand spotted the female on a very tiny sapling, we turned the leaf and there were plentiful eggs and one or two caterpillars that have just emerged from the eggs or maybe a day old. All of us tried the macro. https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/37575706
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/37556367
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/37556361

https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/37554100
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/37554101
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/37554102

In all this, we became so engrossed that we seriously lost track of time. When the rats started jumping in the stomach, we realized, we must call it a day. Not before visiting the stream area to see some puddling activity. We found nothing but a blue pansy.
So we began the return. On our way again we saw a couple of cerulean in dsf. Just before hitting the road, a psyche pair came out and we took another 10 minutes to catch them. On the road, Swanand was telling about uploading observations on I Nat when we spotted an empty chrysalis of the common wanderer. Along with it, we got to see its host plant. We thought, Chalo, this is the end. We moved ahead and again on a plant right on road we saw another empty chrysalis, this time it was of a common crow. The host plant was like 15-20 ft away. It crawled all that distance to come and pupate on this climber, right on the road.
Calls have started coming from home and we decided to quickly grab a bite and rush. As we were rushing we saw a gull nectaring on lantana flowers. We again stopped to photograph it. It was even basking in the sunlight. So there went some 10 more minutes. We just finished with this when I recalled Pavanji’s mention of a photograph shared on the group. (This was a peacock royal on a red-colored leaf, photographed by Maheshji.) I look upon the plant and there it is, the peacock royal was around. We saw for access to the plant but it was covered with fencing of barbed wires. An old lady was standing around the same spot. Swanand spoke to her and she told of access from behind. We all reached the spot and the royal gave us a royal photoshoot! There are plenty of dendropthoe plants on an old mango tree. Which is a host plant for the peacock royal, so on your next visit do expect to see one around the same spot!!!!!
Our lunch was a soulful woodfire cooked jowari bhakri and pithla. Nothing could have ended our exciting day than a pet bhar ke ghar ka khana.

Here is the list and we’d tried to photograph as many butterflies as possible. Swanand and I have already uploaded
the photographs on I Naturalist here are the links:
https://www.inaturalist.org/calendar/pavandamoor/2020/1/12
https://www.inaturalist.org/calendar/swanand/2020/1/12
https://www.inaturalist.org/calendar/savita/2020/1/12

Pavanji photographed some excellent frames
of the butterflies. Two, in particular, those I saw are my personal favorites,
of a glassy tiger on this wildflower and a striped tiger on lantana. Pavanji, please share those. Swanand had some beautify macros of castor eggs. One caterpillar is seen to just about hatch out of an egg.

Category Family Scientific Name Common Name
Skippers
1. Skippers Hesperiidae Parnara/Pelopida species
2. Skippers Hesperiidae Hasora chromus Common banded awl
Blues
3. Blues Lycaenidae Castalius rosimon rosimon Continental Common Pierrot
4. Blues Lycaenidae Caleta decidia decidia Indian Angled Pierrot
5. Blues Lycaenidae Acytolepis puspa felderi Malabar Common Hedge Blue
6. Blues Lycaenidae Zizeeria karsandra Dark Grass Blue
7. Blues Lycaenidae Zizula hylax hylax Indian Tiny Grass Blue
8. Blues Lycaenidae Euchrysops cnejus cnejus Oriental Gram Blue
9. Blues Lycaenidae Catochrysops strabo strabo Oriental Forget-me-not
10. Blues Lycaenidae Lampides boeticus Pea Blue
11. Blues Lycaenidae Jamides bochus bochus Indian Dark Cerulean
12. Blues Lycaenidae Jamides celeno celeno Oriental Common Cerulean
13. Blues Lycaenidae Prosotas dubiosa indica Indian Tailless Lineblue
14. Blues Lycaenidae Rapala manea schistacea Bengal Slate Flash
15. Blues Lycaenidae Tajuria cippus cippus Indian Peacock Royal
16. Blues Lycaenidae Iraota timoleon Silver Streak Blue
Brush footed
17. Brush footed Nymphalidae Melantis leda leda Oriental Common Evening Brown
18. Brush footed Nymphalidae Ypthima baldus madrasa Sahyadri Common Five-ring
19. Brush footed Nymphalidae Phalanta phalantha phalantha Oriental Common Leopard
20. Brush footed Nymphalidae Neptis hylas varmona Indian Common Sailer
21. Brush footed Nymphalidae Ariadne merione merione Dakhan Common Castor
22. Brush footed Nymphalidae Junonia atlites atlites Oriental Grey Pansy
23. Brush footed Nymphalidae Junonia hierta hierta Oriental Yellow Pansy
24. Brush footed Nymphalidae Junonia iphita iphita Oriental Chocolate Pansy
25. Brush footed Nymphalidae Junonia lemonias lemonias Chinese Lemon Pansy
26. Brush footed Nymphalidae Junonia orithya swinhoei Pale Blue Pansy
27. Brush footed Nymphalidae Vanessa cardui Painted Lady
28. Brush footed Nymphalidae Hypolimnas bolina jacintha Oriental Great Eggfly male
29. Brush footed Nymphalidae Hypolimnas misippus Danaid Eggfly male
30. Brush footed Nymphalidae Parantica aglea aglea Coromandel Glassy Tiger
31. Brush footed Nymphalidae Tirumala limniace exoticus Oriental Blue Tiger
32. Brush footed Nymphalidae Danaus chrysippus chrysippus Oriental Plain Tiger
33. Brush footed Nymphalidae Danaus genutia genutia Oriental Stripped Tiger
34. Brush footed Nymphalidae Euploea core core Indian Common Crow
Swallowtails
35. Swallowtails Papilionidae Pachliopta aristolochiae Indian Common Rose
Whites & Yellows
36. Whites & Yellows Pieridae Catopsilia pomona Common Emigrant
37. Whites & Yellows Pieridae Catopsilia pyranthe Mottled Emigrant
38. Whites & Yellows Pieridae Eurema brigitta rubella Red-line Small Grass Yellow
39. Whites & Yellows Pieridae Eurema hecabe hecabe Oriental Common Grass Yellow
40. Whites & Yellows Pieridae Eurema laeta laeta Indian Spotless Grass Yellow
41. Whites & Yellows Pieridae Delias eucharis Indian Jezebel
42. Whites & Yellows Pieridae Leptosia nina nina Oriental Psyche
43. Whites & Yellows Pieridae Cepora nerissa phryne Dakhan Common Gull
44. Whites & Yellows Pieridae Pareronia hippia Indian Wanderer male + female

-Savita

Posted by swanand swanand, January 14, 2020 12:02

Comments

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Very detailed documentation with lucid description. Really loved reading this. Please keep it up.

Posted by vijaybarve 12 days ago (Flag)
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Added the link of @pavandamoor 's calendar :)

Posted by swanand 10 days ago (Flag)
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Thanks, @vijaybarve sir! You inspired us for using this platform.

Posted by swanand 10 days ago (Flag)
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Thanks Swanand for linking my observations.

Posted by pavandamoor 9 days ago (Flag)
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Thanks Vijay sir for the encouragement.

Posted by pavandamoor 9 days ago (Flag)

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