Lesser Grass Blue Butterfly (Zizina otis)
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[Photo] Pale Grass Blue Zizina otis Lycaenidae. Lepidoptera. Bandipur. January 2006 Photograph by L. Shyamal
The Lesser Grass Blue, Zizina otis, is a species of blue butterfly found in south Asia.
Male upperside: pale violet-blue, with a silvery sheen in certain lights, jfore wing: a broad brown edging along the termen, which covere in some specimens quite the outer fourth of the mug, while in others is much narrower. In all specimens it is broadest at apex and is bounded by an anticiliary darker line, beyond which the cilia are brownish at base and white outwardly. Hind wing: anterior or costal third to half and apex brown; a slender black anticiliary line, bevond which the cilia are as in the fore wing. Underside: brownish grey. Fore wing: a short, transverse, dusky lunule on the discocellulars and a transverse, anteriorly curved, discal series of seven minute black spots, all the spots more or less rounded, the posterior two geminate, the discocellular lunule and each discal spot conspicuously encircled with white; the terminal markings beyond the above consist of an inner and an outer transverse subterminal series of dusky spots, each spot edged on the inner side very obscurely with dusky white, the inner line of spots lunular, the outer with the spots more or less rounded. Cilia dusky. Hind wing : a transverse, curved, subbasal series of four spots and an irregular transverse discal series of nine small spots black, each spot encircled narrowly witli white. Of the discal spots the posterior four are placed in an outwardly oblique, slightly curved line, the middle two spots geminate; the three spots above these are placed in an oblique transverse line further outwards ; lastly, the anterior two spots are posited one over the other and shifted well inwards, just above the apex of the cell; discocellular lunule and terminal markings as on the fore wing, but the inner subterminal lunular line in the latter broader and more prominent. Cilia dusky. Antenna black, shafts ringed with white; head, thorax and abdomen brown, with a little blue scaling; beneath: white.
Female. Upperside: brown, with a more or less distinct suffusion of violet-blue at the bases of the wings, on the hind wing continued obscurely along the dorsum; both foreand hind wings with slender anticiliary lines, darker than the ground-colour. Underside: ground-colour slightly darker than in the male, markings precisely similar. Antennae, head, thorax and abdomen as in the male, but the thorax and abdomen above without any blue scaling.
Larval host plants
The species breeds on many plants of the family Leguminosae including Alysicarpus vaginalis,Desmodium spp., Glycine max, Indigofera spp., Mimosa spp..