Thiruvananthapuram: The ‘Budha Mayoori’ or Papilio buddha has been identified as the state butterfly of Kerala. The wings are basically with glittering blue mixed green on top and dark green all over its body and surrounding area of the wings.
These species of the butterflies are the most beautiful of its kind. They are also known as ‘Budha Peacock’. The decision was made at a wildlife board meeting presided over by chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan. Only the approval by the state government is pending.
The wings of Budha Mayoori is 90-100 mm wide. It belongs to the papilionidae family. These are commonly found in the Western Ghats and also extensively in Kerala, Karnataka and Goa. In Kerala, these are abundantly found in the Malabar region mostly from July to December and often in January.
These are among the endangered butterfly species. So when the Budha Mayoori be declared as the state butterfly, further actions will be taken to protect them. It is only because of Budha Mayoori's beauty that it has become endangered.
They are generally caught to be ornamental items and to be placed inside paper weights. Budha Mayoori have been included in the Schedule 2 of the Wildlife Protection Act.
4 species shortlisted
Four species of butterflies were shortlisted for the title. Vanadevatha (Malabar Trim Nimph), Pulli Vaalan (Malabar Banded Swallowtail) and Malabar Rose (Pachliopta Pandiyana) were the others in the list. Vanadevatha entered the final round along with Budha Mayoori.
Maharashtra is the first state to have a state butterfly. Blue Mormon was declared as Maharashtra’s state butterfly. It is the second largest butterfly found in the country. Karnataka declared the country’s largest butterfly Southern Bird Wing as its state butterfly.