The Common Crow Butterfly (Euploea core) is a common butterfly in South Asia and Australia. It is an insect. It belongs to the Danainae subfamily – crow and tiger butterflies.
The Common Crow Butterfly is dark-brown with two rows of white spots on the margins of its wings. Its underside is paler brown with white spots. Its glossy-black body has many white spots.
It measures 8-9 centimetres (3-3.5 inches) long.
The Common Crow Butterfly is found in southern Pakistan, Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Russia, and Australia, at sea level and the mountains. It likes all types of regions from arid lands to forests.
It tastes terrible to its predators – it is inedible. This is its protection. It rests on flowers longer than most butterflies, because it knows that predators won’t try to eat it. Caterpillars and adult butterflies emit a toxin that they eat from toxic plants.
Caterpillars eat plant leaves and adult butterflies sip nectar from flowers. One of its favourite plants is the Oleander. If predators try to eat the Common Crow Butterfly, they find that the wings are leathery. If a predator ingests the toxins emitted from the butterfly, it is likely to vomit. Therefore, predators learn not to attack the Common Crow Butterfly.
On hot days, it swarms with other butterflies on wet sand and surfaces. This is called mud-puddling.
Females lay white eggs on the underside of leaves. The eggs become greyish when they are ready to hatch into caterpillars. The caterpillars stay close to where they were born, feeding on plant leaves. Caterpillars pupate – they make a chrysalis, which is a casing. Inside the casing, the caterpillar undergoes metamorphosis (changes), and it emerges as an adult butterfly.
Its lifespan is about 4 weeks.
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM