The Malabar Banded Peacock, also known as Papilio Buddha, is now facing grave threat of extinction. Sadly, there is nothing much we can do.
The Malabar Banded Peacock belongs to one of the spectacular family of butterflies. They have amazing iridescent colors and hues. Some of the species look green or blue depending upon the viewing angle. Thanks to this amazing camouflage, these butterflies have survived over a centuries. Otherwise it is not hard to miss the Papilio Buddha.
This species is ranked as one of the most beautiful butterflies in India. It is native to Australia, the indo-Malaya regions and India. In India, it is found in the Western Ghats – the Niligiris and some parts of Kerala. It derives is common name from the Malabar Coast of India.
India being house of rich biodiversity and rare species, Papilio Buddha finds its home in the cool and misty hills of South India. There have been rare sightings of this precious and evasive butterfly by the forest officials as well as nature enthusiasts.
This rare species of butterfly was first formally recorded in 1872 by Westwood. Thereafter, there is no mention of sub-species. And this makes it all the more rare and precious.
Its status has been declared as RARE and falls under Schedule II, which means that this species gets second level of protection under the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972.
These butterflies are prized souvenirs as they are bright, beautiful and iridescent. While their beauty leads to these butterflies being trapped, the climatic changes and global warming is taking toll on its existence.
The climate is non-reluctant. The man is careless. This butterfly will vanish in no time. There is no dearth of people trying to collect wildlife souvenirs.
Papilio buddha Westwood 1872
Classification / Taxonomy
Specific name: BUDDHA