Scientific nameBhutanitis thaidina Blanchard, 1871
Chinese Three-tailed Swallowtail
Wingspan about 8-11 cm. Forewing with termen straight;
apex rounded; submarginal line slim and ranging from apex
to tornus; postmedial line broader than submarginal one,
but slightly forked from R2 to M2; four stripes running
across discoidal cell and three of them reaching to lower
margin; ground colour black with all stripes and bands
light yellow; underside similar to upperside but paler
in colouration. Hindwing with termen undulate, tornus
slightly lobed, and with three prominent tails extending
from M3, Cu1 and Cu2; five submarginal lunate patches
arranged from humeral angle near tornus; three bluish
white spots below a red sloppy patch on m2 to cu2 cells;
postmedial line starting from costal margin to Cu2; proximal
portion of Cu1 and Cu2 tinged white; a sloppy yellow strip
running through discoidal cell; underside similar to upperside.
Female similar to male in colouration but with broader
forewing and shorter tails.
The nominal subspecies is reported from the N.E. India,
Tibet, Sichuan (Kangding=Tatsenlu, Hailougou, Omeishan,
Minshan region), Yuennan (Yuenlong, Nujiang, Jingshajinag
basin) and Shanxi (Taibaishan). The subspecies dongchuanensis
Lee is known only from Yuennan (Dongchaun and Chiaojia)
and presently protected by the mainland China (Bai &
Wang, 1998). There are two similar species B. yulongensis
Chou (Yuennan, Yulongshan) and B. nigrilima Chou (See
Chou, 1994: 187 and Chou & Wang, 1995: 87), but Koiwaya
(1995) stated these two species might be only individual
aberrances of B. thaidina.
Habitat and Ecology
The habitat of this species is mainly deciduous Lauraceae-Fagaceae
forests at about 2000-3000 m. The adults utilize nectar
sources from Rhododendron spp, Asteraceae and Ulmaceae.
The females lay eggs in patch under the leaves of Aristolochia
spp (e.g. Aristolochia moupinensis). Eggs are white and
spherical. The early instars are aggregated and bearing
many veruccae on their body. Pupation occurs under the
fallen leaves. For more detailed biological information
see Watanabe (1998: 19) and Lee (1986).
Threats and Conservation Status
Threats and Conservation Status This species is still
under great threats of over-collecting and insect specimen
trading. In the mainland China, illegal collecting, deforestation
in the southwestern provinces may cause instant decline
of local populations.