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Butterflies of Southern Africa.

The quantity of known butterfly species throughout the world number in the thousands, and the list is continually being added to. Southern Africa is well-represented, many species varying in beauty, colour and size. Many parts of Africa still remain unexplored, and the observant hunter stands a good chance of seeing both common and rare species in the field.

Black Bordered Charaxes(Charaxes poilox gazanus)

This species is found throughout Africa, but this form is found in Zimbabwe and Mozambique. It is commonly found in the Dondo, Amatongas and Maronga forests in Mozambique, and at Mount Selinda, Mutare, and the Honde Valley in Zimbabwe. It seems to prefer open country rather than the thick, dense forests. The males can often be found perched high up on a twig or branch with their wings open sunning themselves. Unlike other Charaxes, the males are not very territorial. Both male and female are attracted to fermenting fruit and sucking holes in damaged trees that exude sap. It can be found on the wing most months of the year. The food plants include Bersama abyssinica and Flueggea virosa.

Blue Pansy (Precis oenone)

This beautiful little butterfly is common throughout Southern Africa. It is more common in the bushveld and woodlands than in the open grassland. It is very territorial and can often be found chasing other butterflies at midday at the tops of kopjes. It often settles on bare rocks or low vegetation. Sometimes they can be caught without the blue patches on the bottom wings. Although this species is found throughout the year, they don't have seasonal variations. Their larval food plants include Asystasia gangetica, Adhatoda densiflora and Mackaya bella.

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Title Annotation:Fact File
Author:Erasmus, Petrus
Publication:African Hunter Magazine
Date:Dec 1, 2014
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