Nakhon Si Thammarat Province-April/May 2013

Posted on: June 11th, 2013 by lesday | No Comments

This year has been very dry on Samui, and the numbers of butterflies here have been exceptionally low, one could say boring! Accordingly I have been popping over, several times, to the mainland in the hope that things were better there. I have been concentrating on the Province south of Surat Thani, where I live.

Nakhon Si Thammarat Province has a diverse range of habitats, from lowland plains, near the coast and to the south-west of the province, to central mountain ranges, which includes Khao Luang which, at 1835m. in height, is the highest point in Thailand south of Bangkok. It has been in these central mountains and their foothills where I have concentrated my searches, as it is there where one can find the best rainforests.

I have not been disappointed! The star of the show was this Delias singhapura singhapura (Lion Jezebel).

Delias singhapura singhapura - male

Delias singhapura singhapura – male

This is one of the rarest species in Thailand, and the subspecies can only be found in Southern Thailand and in West Malaysia, where it is equally rare. Owing to this, I can not, unfortunately, reveal the exact location of the finding. We found a small colony, which I had not found during my previous visits to the location a few years back. However, they were breeding, as can be seen in the photo of the female, who, with her abdomen raised, is saying that she had already mated, and therefore did not want to be bothered with a male that was fluttering, hopefully, close by.

Unwilling female, with suitor flying around

Unwilling female, with suitor flying around

I will be keeping a close watch on this colony in the future in the hope that it may expand in size, and also be found in other locations nearby.

Locations we visited where I can reveal which species we found include Karom Waterfall. There is a quite short nature trail there, and below are a couple of the species we saw there.

Arhopala ariel

Arhopala ariel. A rare species of the ganesa subgroup of this huge genus.

Pirdana hyela rudolphii

Pirdana hyela rudolphii

 

At the Krung Ching Waterfall trail (about 4Km.long) we have seen many species. Near the start of the trail, there is a short steep climb, and at the end, near the very beautiful waterfall, a long, steep and slippery drop, which could be dangerous with the wrong soles on your shoes. The species include:

Choaspes stigmatus caudatus. A late afternoon species.

Choaspes stigmatus caudatus. A late afternoon species.

Deramas livens evansi. All members of this genus are very rare.

Deramas livens evansi. All members of this genus are very rare.

Sithon nedymond ismarus - male

Sithon nedymond ismarus – male

Arhopala ammonides ammonides. Another member of the ganesa subgroup, but with an additional costal white spot.

Arhopala ammonides ammonides. Another member of the ganesa subgroup, but with an additional costal white spot.

Idea lynceus lynceus

Idea lynceus lynceus

Kallima limborgi. The famous Leaf Butterfly, a species I had always wanted to find.

Kallima limborgi. The famous Leaf Butterfly, a species I had always wanted to find.

Symbrenthia hypatia chersonesia

Symbrenthia hypatia chersonesia

Zeuxidia doubledayi doubledayi - male. A rare upperside shot.

Zeuxidia doubledayi doubledayi – male. A rare upperside shot.

Isma bononoides. A very rare species distinguished by having the hyaline spots yellowish.

Isma bononoides. A very rare species distinguished by having the hyaline spots yellowish.

Yong Waterfall National Park was the southernmost area I visited. Again, there is a short nature trail away from the main waterfall which is very popular with locals, and, once more, I came across some new species to me.

Britomartis cleoboides cleoboides

Britomartis cleoboides cleoboides

Losaria neptunus neptunus

Losaria neptunus neptunus

These are just three of the places we visited on our trips, and there are many more locations that can be investigated in this varied and beautful province, a large part of which, I am pleased to say, is made up of protected areas.

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