The World of Birdwing Butterflies



Troides aeacus is the northernmost birdwing butterfly as it stretches its range well into China.

It is fairly common is some areas, like around the Gulf of Thailand, while it is very rare in its northern areas. Ssp insularis from Sumatra is among the rarest of all birdwings.

T. aeacus can be seen in open patches of the forest. The imagoes float 4-5 metres above ground, but often dive down to tempting flowers.

To view the images of this species, click on the species name.
To go direct to the images
of a specific subspecies,
click on the subspecies name.

T. aeacus aeacus

Auctor: Felder, 1860
Syn.: rhadamantus Boisduval, 1836 (part.)
Syn.: rhadamantus Doubleday, 1846
Syn.: amphrisus Kirby, 1871 (ned Fabricius, 1787) (part.)
Syn.: thomsonii Bates, 1875 (part.)
Syn.: minos Oberthür, 1879 (nec Cramer, 1779)
Syn.: praecox Fruhstorfer, 1913
Syn.: thibeticus Staudinger & Bang-Haas, 1926 (nom. nud.)
Syn.: thibetana Wernicke & Kotsch, 1936 (nom. nud.)
Syn.: thibeticus ("Oberthür") Nakahara & Kurosawa, 1958 (nom. nud.)
Syn.: tibetanus ("Oberthür") Kurosawa, Igarashi, Omoto & Kimura, 1974
(nom. nud.)
Distribution: Nepal, N.E.India, Bhutan, Tibet, N.W.Burma, S.China, N.Thailand,
Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam
Etymology: Aeakus was judge of the underworld in Greek mythology (see
etymology under T.rhadamantus rhadamantus and T.minos).
Described forms:

T. aeacus szechwanus

Auctor: Okano & Okano, 1983
Distribution: China; Szechuan (=Sichuan) Province. Distribution in W.China is
Etymology: Named after its type locality, Szechuan Province.
Described forms:

T. aeacus malaiianus

Auctor: Fruhstorfer, 1902
Syn.: thomsoni Jordan, 1908 nec thomsonii Bates, 1875
Distribution: S.Thailand, Malay Peninsula
Etymology: Named after its type locality, Malaya (Perak)
Notes: Much confusion has occurred with regard to the name of this taxon.
Jordan (1908) and many later authors after him used the name
thomsoni, which was derived from the name thomsonii. The
name thomsonii was given to a specimen from Cambodia
(Bates, 1875). The name thomsoni or thomsonii has thus nothing to
do with T. aeacus from S.Thailand/West Malaysia. [Ref. Haugum & Low (1985)].
Described forms:

T. aeacus insularis

Auctor: Ney, 1905
Distribution: N.E.Sumatra
Etymology: Insularis = of islands
Notes: Haugum & Low (1985) considered the taxon to be perhaps the
rearest of all birdwing butterflies, having been able to locate only five
single specimens in collections.
Described forms:

T. aeacus formosanus

Auctor: Rothschild, 1899
Syn.: formosana Rippon, 1906
Syn.: kaguya Nakahara & Esaki, 1930
Syn.: formonsanus D'Abrera, 1975 (lapsus)
Distribution: S. & S.E. Taiwan
Etymology: Named after its type locality, Formosa (= Taiwan).
Described forms:
mf. kuroboshi Nomura, 1937
mf. maeboshi Hirayama, 1941

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© Tony Nagypal, 2000-2005

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