lemon emigrant butterfly, western ghats

It is lemony, and it is a migrant. Migration could be one of its strategy to deal with adverse seasonal changes, like the tropical rainfall. It also exhibits seasonal dimorphism: dark yellow colors(form crocale) in wet summer season and pale yellow colors (form pomane) in dry winter season. It is one of the mechanisms by which insects cop up with adverse seasonal changes. It could be either to adjust body temperature and metabolic rate or as a means for better camouflage.

Such dimorphs can confuse observers into recording these 2 forms as different species.

Species: catopsilia pomona / catopsilia crocale
English: Common Emigrant, Lemon Emigrant
Location: Lonar, Buldhana, Maharashtra
Date: 21 Feb 2011

Note: It is probably a female in the image above.

Rienks J., 1999: The lemon migrant, catopsilia pomona (pieridae). Biology of Australian butterflies, 135-142.

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