I came to know about this cute little paradise on earth from one of my friend, Mr Rajesh Nair who is a resident of Thodupuza, Idduki district of Kerala. On his invitation I visited Thodupuza and from there to Thommonkuthu three times. Here is a diary of my visit to that butterfly hot spot.
Thodupuza is located in the Idduki district of Kerala about 50Km from the nearest Railway station Aluva, just before Ernakulam. From Aluva there are in-frequent bus service to Thodupuza. How ever there are frequent buses to a nearby place Muvattupuza from Aluva.
Thommankuthu is a real butterfly hot spot with over 200 species of Butterflies to see. I am posting a few prize catches from this place.
Paris Peacock (papilio paris) is large swallow tail butterfly found in India. This strong flier comes close to ground for mud puddling during early afternoon. This species is of course not an uncommon species. Both the sexes are know to mud-puddle. These are often seen along forest streams.
The Shiva Sunbeam (Curetis siva) is a fairly large butterfly and uncommon in the Lycaenidae(blues) family. This butterfly is endemic to the Western Ghats of India. The males are know to mud-puddle and are quite territorial. My learned friend Dr Krishnamegh Kunte has however genuinely raised a doubt for the identification of this butterfly to be a Toothed Sunbeam (Curetis dentata) as it is difficult to identify this species only with its UN (close wing) snap.
The Large 4-line Blue (Nacaduba pactolus) is one of the rare butterflies found in India. This strong flier is seen on damp patches and flowers. This butterfly prefers thick, moist forest.
Malayan (Megisba malaya) is a small butterfly of the Lycaenidae (Blues) family. This butterfly loves evergreen forests. The adults are seen flying low close to ground. Males are seen mudpuddle in damp patches and cow dung.
The Western Centaur Oakblue (Nilasera centaurus) is a Western Ghat endemic butterfly of the Lycaenidae (blues) family. The adult male butterfly has a brilliant metallic purple colouration of the Upper wing while the female has a brilliant blue upper wing. The adult butterfly has a tail. The males are occasionally seen mudpuddling near clear streams in wooded regions.
The Large Oakblue (Arhopala amantes) is one of the largest among the Lycaenidae (blue) family. It has a characteristic bright metallic blue on the upper side of the wing . This butterfly loves canopy of small trees and occasionally comes down to the bushes. It flies a great deal in the day and rests on leaves exposed to the sun.
The Redspot (Zesius chrysomallus) is an un-common butterfly that I clicked at Thommankuthu.
Fluffy Tit (Zeltus etolus) is another beautiful Lycaenidae (blue) butterfly found in India.