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93 butterfly species recorded in Arunachal’s Ziro

The annual event, organized jointly by Hapoli Forest Division and ‘Ngunu Ziro’ - a local NGO that works for conservation of flora and fauna in the region, was primarily focused on exploring Tale Valley in addition to Pange area of Tale Wildlife Sanctuary for butterflies and moths, official sources said.

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Itanagar: As many as 93 species of butterflies were documented during the 8th edition of Ziro Butterfly Meet that concluded at Pange in Ziro valley of Arunachal Pradesh’s Lower Subansiri district on Friday.

The annual event, organized jointly by Hapoli Forest Division and ‘Ngunu Ziro’ – a local NGO that works for conservation of flora and fauna in the region, was primarily focused on exploring Tale Valley in addition to Pange area of Tale Wildlife Sanctuary for butterflies and moths, official sources said.

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Among the important butterfly species recorded during the meet included Brown Forester (Lethe serbonis), which is legally protected in India under Schedule II of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972. Another important species of skipper butterfly recorded was Manipur Ace (Sovia malta), earlier known to occur only from Manipur and Mishmi Hills.

One of the significant findings of the meet was the sighting of Great Hockeystick Sailor butterfly (Neptis aspasia) which was photographed for the second time in Tale Valley after being rediscovered after 68 years from Arunachal Pradesh by Chandrasekharan et al (2021) in September 2021.

However, the most interesting finding of the event was the sighting of the female form of Eastern Courtier butterfly (Sephisa chandra) at Pange which has been photographed in the process of egg laying. This is probably the first photograph of the female Eastern Courtier from Arunachal Pradesh.

This species is legally protected in India under Schedule I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972. Other important butterflies seen during the meet were Giant Hopper, White Owl, Yellow Owl, Bhutan Glory, female Brown Gorgon, Blue Caliph and three species of Wood Browns.

It may be mentioned that 59 butterfly species were recorded during last year’s meet, sources said.

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