Mimetic Relationships of Butterflies, Commonly Found at Taki, North 24 Parganas, West Bengal
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Coloration and mimicry are the naturally selected survival tools for lepidopterans, both in larval and adult life either playing the protective or aggressive or advertising or cryptic or camouflaging mechanisms. Besides being nature’s priceless artwork, butterflies are one of the most beneficial terrestrial insects, playing a major role as pollinators and an essential component of commercial agriculture, horticulture, wild plant and animal diversity. They also play role as bioindicators. The natural distribution of butterfly populations in any local habitat is primarily defined by the distribution of their nectar plants and larval host plants as there exist species specific relationships among the host and nectar plants and the dependant butterflies. Also there exist specific ecological and functional correlation among the mimetic forms (the models and mimics and the individual members of a mimicry-complex or Mullerian ring) found in any particular habitat. The present study is focussed on observation, documentation and analysis of mimetic butterflies commonly found at Taki, North 24 Parganas; availability and prominence of mimicking sets, their intra- and interfamily relationships, reporting about their larval host plants and nectar plants. The study also has an importance from conservation approach.
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