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Male Leopard lacewing (Cethosia cyane) Inner side

The above image is underwing of the dazzling Asian male leopard lacewing that composes of bright orange, yellow, or red, whereas females feature wing patterns with a gray or white background. Both sexes are sprinkled with blackish-blue spots and lining veins.


The leopard lacewing butterfly, which is scientifically known as Cethosia cyane, are found from India, Southeast Asia, Malaysia, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. Two subspecies are described, one from India, Bhutan and Burma, and the other from northern Thailand and Indo-China.


Frequently observed in tropical and subtropical forests, during the rainy season leopard lacewing numbers increase dramatically. Hundreds of the butterflies may fly en masse, creating an amazing spectacle.


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Taken on August 16, 2008