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17 Nov

Kaiser-i-Hind Butterfly

Kaiser-i-Hind Butterfly

Recently, Arunachal Pradesh has approved the large, brightly coloured Kaiser-i-Hind as the State butterfly.

  • Kaiser-i-Hind literally means Emperor of India.

Key Points

  • Scientific Name: Teinopalpus imperialis
  • Habitat:
    • It is one of the very rare and elusive swallowtail butterflies which are found at medium and higher elevations.
      • Swallowtail butterfly is any of a group of butterflies in the family Papilionidae (order Lepidoptera).
    • It flies high in the canopy of broad leaved temperate evergreen forests.
      • The temperate evergreen forests are found in the Eastern and Western Himalayas.
    • This butterfly with a 90-120 mm wingspan is found in (West Bengal, Meghalaya, Assam, Sikkim and Manipur) along the Eastern Himalayas.
      • Its presence indicates the existence of a good forest ecosystem and protection.
    • The butterfly also flutters in Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam and southern China.
  • Protection Status:
    • IUCN: Near Threatened
    • CITES: Appendix II
    • Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972: Schedule II


  • About:
    • Butterflies are insects from the order Lepidoptera of phylum Arthropoda which also includes moths.
    • Adult butterflies have large, often brightly coloured wings, and conspicuous, fluttering flight.
    • Recently, a Himalayan butterfly known as Golden Birdwing (Troides aeacus) has been discovered as India’s largest butterfly after 88 years.
  • Significance:
    • Rich Biodiversity: Abundance of butterflies in any area represents the rich biodiversity.
    • Indicator Species: The butterfly acts as an indicator species.
      • An indicator species provides information on the overall condition of the ecosystem and of other species in that ecosystem. They reflect the quality and changes in environmental conditions as well as aspects of community composition.
    • Pollinator: It acts as a pollinator by helping in pollination and conserving several species of plants.

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