List Of Butterflies Of Tobago
The combined efforts of generations of resident and visiting naturalists have helped to make the butterfly fauna of Tobago well known. Some 123 species have been recorded on the island of Tobago that has a land area of only 300 km² (1P16 mi²) and is approximately 42 km long and 10 km wide.
This list follows Barcant (1970) who is the main source of information on the butterflies of Tobago. His book is no longer in print, but used copies are available at booksellers. Barcant gives each species an English common name, but many of these were never taken up. Barcant's English name and the more widely accepted English name are given in the list below. Since 1970 many of the Latin names used by Barcant have also changed. The 2004 catalog of Lamas was used to update the taxonomy.
There are little data on the seasonal distribution or abundance of the listed butterflies. In general, butterflies are more abundant in the wet season. However in the dry season, when most people visit, and especially if the dry season is a wet one, there are many whites/yellows on the wing. These are hard to identify without capture. Other butterflies commonly seen in the dry season in the south west of the island are the Monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus), the White Peacock (Anartia jatrophe), the Brown Peacock (Anartia amathea), the West Indian Buckeye (Junonia evarete) and the Red Rim (Biblis hyperia). Away from the flat south west towards Arnos vale, there are other many butterflies to be found, including skippers and blues and the Blue Tinted Handkerchief (Dynamine theseus). In the rain forest, on the main ridge, butterflies are quite scarce at this time of year.
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