Abisara echerius - the Plum Judy (dry season form)
Doi Suthep-Pui N.P., Chiang Mai, Thailand
Order : Lepidoptera
Family : Riodinidae
Sub-Family : Nemeobiinae
Genus : Abisara
Species : Abisara echerius paionea
Abisara echerius, known as the Plum Judy, is distributed from Sri Lanka, through India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, and China. It is quite variable in appearance but always has this distinctive angular form. It is an uncommon species in Thailand and is found mainly in the very north of the country. It is an active butterfly that spends much of its time in the treetops but can occasionally be seen amongst foliage lower down. It has an unusal habit of frequently turning around as it progresses along branches and this is useful in identifying the species even from a distance. It is thought that this behaviour is designed to confuse and evade predators.
It is a small to medium size butterfly with a wingspan of 42-50mm and is usually only found in forests. Larval host plants include Maesa indica , Embelia subcoriacea, Embelia laeta and possibly other species in the herbaceous Primulaceae family.
All my insect pics are handheld single shots of live animals, usually in the wild.