Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Love and the Crimson Rose

The Crimson Rose Pachliopta hector is a large swallowtail which flutters high in the treetops. It is difficult to photograph this red bodied butterfly, as it never stays for long in the photographable height. I was very lucky to see the mating pair in my vegetable patch.

The crimson Rose feeds on Aristolochia as a catterpillar, and imbibes the toxins. Its red body warns the predators that it is poisonous. Red seems to be the danger signal among butterflies too! The birds avoid the Crimson Rose.

The female Common Mormon, which is not poisonous, imitates the Crimson Rose to protect itself.

These butterflies are common in India and Sri Lanka.


  1. Namaste Lotusleaf, how are you doing these days, are you around with your camera taking so many beautiful pictures of nature and little beings??? I know you enjoy doing these... I can see it.
    María Cecilia

  2. Wow - I've never seen a mating pair of butterflies before!
    Thanks for your comment: yes, the Jerusalem artichokes have yelow flowers. I believe they're related to the Sunflowers.

  3. Thank you, Maria Cecilia.Looking forward to seeing your new post.
    Hi Katarina! This place is now full of butterflies. Many are doing a sort of courting dance! Cheers!

  4. What beautiful butterflies! I love seeing the pretty visitors you get in your garden.