Sunday, April 29, 2012

බැබිල[Bebila] (Hibiscus micranthus)

An indigenous herb common along roads, forest edges, rocky hillsides and open scrublands of the dry zone.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Little Orange Tip (Coltis etrida limbata)

Rather rare butterfly inhabits coastal areas of north of Chilaw and Tangalla to Hambantota of extreme south. However sometimes it occurs further inland in north. Those from southern areas are larger, darker and very richly colored. Larva feeds on Cadaba fruticosa plants of family Capparaceae. W. Ormiston noted of a specimen taken at cart road at Haldummulla, at least 50 miles from its usual haunts and he believed that it had pupated on a Hambantota salt cart and hatched out on the way to Haputhale. Similarly he doubted of specimens of etrida race might brought over from India on the native boats because in Mannar district specimens that are very close to typical etrida  may be taken in company with typical limbata.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

බමුණු පියාකුස්සා/බ්‍රාහ්මණ උකුස්සා/Brahminy Kite (Haliastur indus)

Common breeding resident mainly in coastal areas and large marshes and man-made tanks/reservoirs of the lowlands. Also an occasional visitor to the hills. Its food consist of any animal which it can capture such as lizards, young or wounded birds, fish, crabs, large insects etc. Its breeding season is from October to April and the nest made of sticks and twigs in the tree top where it lays 2-3 eggs. 


Monday, April 23, 2012

Single Branded Crow/Common Crow (Euploea core)

Very common butterfly found all over the island in all the year round. It takes part in migrations. Larva feeds on Nuga (Ficus benghalensis), Karenu (Nerium oleander) and Bo (Ficus religiosa) trees. 

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Sri Lanka Swallow (Hirundo hyperythra)

Common resident bird recently split from Red-rumped swallow (Hirundo daurica) adding another endemic bird to Sri lankan list. It is common all over the island in open areas of forests, plantations, paddy fields and scrublands. Often encounters as pairs and sometime as small flocks. It flies usually close to the ground and food consists mainly of small insects captured on the wing. Sri Lanka Swallow built bottle like nest with mud on roof of a cave, under a bridge or sometime even under a  roof of a building or a house. Main breeding season is from April to July. 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Plain Tiger (Danaus chrysippus)

A very common butterfly found all over the island in all the year round while commonest in the dry areas of the country. Its female occurs in two forms; one similar to the male and other with nearly all orange wings with dark margin and few discal spots only on the hind wings. Both forms of female are mimicked by the Danaid Eggfly. Larva feeds on many species of Asclepiadaceae such as කන් කුඹල [Kankumbala] (Asclepias curassavica & Cynanchum tunicatum), එළවරා [Elawara] (Calotropis gigantea), Tylophora spp. Marsdenia spp and Wissani/Meda-Hangu(Pergularia daemia)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Star of Bethlehem, Madamfate (Laurentia longiflora)

Native plant of West Indies. Introduced and naturalized in moist places such as roadside ditches, paddy fields, dilapidated walls and bases of coconut trees from wet lowland to midland hills. Also cultivated in home gardens.  Flowering throughout the year. 

Monday, April 16, 2012

Plumbeous silverline (Spindasis schistacea)

Rare butterfly of the low country open areas while plentiful in the hills. Its early stages and food plants are not yet recorded.

Friday, April 13, 2012

මුහුදු බිම් තඹර[Muhudu-bin-tambara]/Goat’s foot glory (Ipomoea pes-caprae)

An indigenous trailing vine, very common in the coastal beaches and sand dunes.  Flowering throughout the year. Both the roots and leaves are used as medicine in India, Sri Lanka and Malaysia. Its common English name is due to two lobed leaves resembling the goat’s foot. 

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Pale-faced Forest-Skimmer (Cratilla lineata calverti)

Pale-faced Forest-Skimmer was described by Fraser as a very common insect on the West Coast of India, but records here in Sri Lanka are only from Kandy (deFonseka T. 2000). However it is a rare forest dwelling dragonfly not only in Kandy but several other forested areas. It breeds in marshes in heavy jungles. (bedjanic, M et al 2007)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Striped Albatross ( Appias libythea libythea)

Rather rare butterfly of dry low lands but found in all elevations during migratory season from November to December. W. Ormiston stated that it is abundant in the Hambantota district in March and May and in the Mannar in July, November and January. (Ormiston W. 1924). Males often mud puddles on wet places to absorb minerals.  Its larva feeds on varies Capparis species of the family Capparidaceae such as Capparis sepiaria, Capparis roxburghii(S: Kalu-illan gedi), Capparis zeylanica (S: Sudu-welangiriya). 

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Yellow Wagtail/කහ හැලපෙන්දා[Kaha Halapendha] (Motacilla flava thunbergi)

Winter migrant to the island where it can be occurred as several races while Grey-headed wagtail (M.f. thunbergi) is the commonest of them which can be seen throughout the country in grasslands and marshes.  There are few other races (M.f. bema [Syke’sYellow wagtail], M.f lutea [Yellow-headed Wagtail], M.f. melanogrisea [Black-headed Yellow wagtail], M.f. simillima [Siberian Yellow Wagtail], M.f. feldegg) those are rare to very rare migrants and vagrants to the dry lowlands. During its stay in Sri Lanka Grey-headed wagtail  feeds as scattered flocks on grasslands, dry tank beds, paddy fields, etc often accompanying with cattle.  It roosts communally in reed-bed or swamp scrub during the night. Grey-headed wagtail  breeds from North-eastern Europe to North-western Siberia

Friday, April 6, 2012

Indigo Flash (Rapala varuna lazulina)

Rare butterfly found in lowlands up to about 500m a.s.l . Its larva feeds on flowers, buds and shoot of Maha Eraminiya (Ziziphus rugosa) and various other plants of family Rhamnaceae and Fabaceae.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Plain prinia (Prinia inornata insularis)

A resident bird locally common in paddy fields, scrub and marsh lands from lowland to lower hills while commoner in the dry zone. Its food mainly consists of insects and spends its time mostly on hopping actively among grass stems solitarily or as pairs in search of them. It breeds probably throughout the year and nest a deep cup of grasses place in grass-tussock or low bush often few feets above the ground (or water since usually it is situated in a swamp). 

Monday, April 2, 2012

Common Bushbrown (Mycalesis perseus)

Common butterfly distributed throughout the island while abundant in the hills and scarce in the north. Larva feeds on varies plants of family PoaceaeCommon Bush brown can be easily distinguished from the similar Dark-brand Bushbrown by four lower ocelli of hind wing. They lie in a curved line of this species.