Hypolycaena erylus teatus
Species: erylus teatus
Common Name: Common Tit
Status in Singapore:
Life History: complete
This butterfly can be found in: •Malaysia •Singapore
Hostplant(s): Averrhoa carambola (Star Fruit) Hibiscus tiliaceus (Sea Hibiscus) Ixora javanica (Javanese Ixora) Saraca cauliflora (Yellow Saraca) Senna fistula (Golden Showers)
The upperside of the male is deep purple blue with a large circular brand on the forewing disc. The female is dull grey-brown and black marginal spots on the greyish white tornal area of the hindwing. The undersides of both sexes are a pale greenish grey with a cell-end bar and a narrow reddish brown post discal line on each wing. There is an orange-crowned black spot and a smaller one on the hindwings.
Habitat & Habits
The Common Tit has been found in a variety of localities in Singapore, from the mangrove-type environment of Sg Buloh Nature Park, to the forested Central Catchment and even in downtown Singapore along traffic congested Victoria Street ! At the last location, the caterpillars of the species were found feeding on the roadside ornamental plant Ixora javanica (Javanese Ixora) in the heart of town. This is probably a new record of the host plant for this species. The caterpillars collected were bred to adulthood.
There are two tails originating from veins 1b and 2 from the hindwing. The species behaves in the typical Lycaenid behaviour of sliding the hindwings in a fashion where the tails appear to be alive. This acts as a decoy to fool predators into thinking that the rear end of the butterfly is the head with the antennae and "eyes".