Liphyra brassolis brassolis

Westwood 1864 - The Moth Butterfly

A most extraordinary species. It is crepuscular (flies in the dusk), like some of the Hesperidae. It's life history is unique.

One of the largest of all the Lycaenidae, the uppersides are orange and black.

Though widespread, it is very rarely encountered. It can be disturbed from its daytime roosts in secondary vegetation, though it is a very fast flyer, and seeing where it goes is difficult in the extreme as it prefers to remain in the undergrowth.

A remarkable fact about this species is that its proboscis is atrophied, and therefore it can not feed.

Flight Period

x                     x


75 - 80mm

Early Stages

Detailed life history information is available from the following resources. S Igarishi - Life Histories of Asian Butterflies, Volume2, Page 550.

Larval Foodplant

The larvae are myrmecophagus, spending its life in the nests of, and feeding entirely on the eggs and larvae of the vicious Weaver (or Kerranga) Ant, Oecophylla samaragdina.


Sikkim, through Mynamar, Indo-China, Peninsular Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore to Australia.