It’s our sincere hope that each of you, our readers, will fully appreciate and enjoy this article about these 7 Fabulous Philippines Fauna. We certainly enjoyed compiling the various bits of data for you. It’s our further hope that it provides you with much to learn and consider.
Obviously, though, these few species listed herein constitute only the smallest portion of the forms of life that abound in this region. We do feel, however, that they serve as excellent representatives of that abundance. To learn of more such, check out our other articles.
Saltwater Crocodile Facts
- Leading off this article about these 7 Fabulous Philippines Fauna we present the impressive reptile known as the Saltwater Crocodile.
- This magnificent work of Nature and evolution most frequently goes by its informative common name for excellent reasons. That term, however, accurate, isn’t the only name applied to it, however. In point of fact, several others are sometimes used.
- The alternate names themselves also often provide clues to its nature. These include such terms as the Indo-Pacific crocodile, esturarine crocodile, sea crocodile, and marine crocodile. The animal’s also sometimes informally referred to as the saltie.
- Professional researchers, meanwhile, typically refer to the creature by its scientific name. That’s the technical name of Crocodylus porosus. Regardless of which name one chooses to use when referring to it, though, it’s an especially impressive crocodilian.
- The renowned German naturalist Johann Gottlob Theanenus Schneider made the first formal recognition of the reptile. The well known researcher acknowledged this incredible example of evolution as a separate and distinct species in the year 1801.
- The animal appears, for the moment, at least, to be maintiaing a population base that’s both stable and sufficient. That further seems to hold true throughout the entirety of its range. The IUCN therefore, presently lists the reptile as Least Concern on its Red List.
- The amazing Saltwater Crocodile nevertheless faces dangers that could potentially threaten it in the future. Habitat loss poses a potential threat, due to human expansion. The ongoing process of climate change, however, likely condstitutes its greatest threat.
Saltwater Crocodile Physical Description
Sheer size alone isn’t the only trait of the Saltwater Crocodile that impresses those who view the creature. That characteristic nonetheless certainly does bear mentioning. That’s because this species presently constitutes the largest of all currently known crocodilians.
The species also, like many of its relatives, displays a degree of the physiological characteristic of sexual dimorphism. In its specific case, though, this ranks as particularly severe. That’s due to the fact that the males attain a length roughly twice that of females.
The significantly longer males reach an average legnth measuring about 20 ft (6 m). Exceptional specimens, however, sometimes attain lengths of as much as 23 ft (7 m). The males further reach a weight that averages approximately 1,000 lbs (453.6 kg).
Females of the species, meanwhile, only attain an average length measuring approximately 10 ft (3 m). Even the exceptional individuals rarely exceed this by much. Sheer mass, however, remains starkly contrasted, with females rarely exceeding 330 lb (150 kg)!
While rare indivuals exceed these weights in both genders, the two sexes remain otherwise virtually indistinguishable in simple appearance. Its snout also develops wider than most related species. A pair of ridges also extends the length of the snout, from the eyes.
The body of the Saltwater Crocodile further differs from most others in its girth. Its body develops as much stouter in form. In coloring, most adults manifest a dark, greenish-drab shade. A few light gray or tan areas sometimes appear, however, in various spots.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Reptilia
- Order: Crocodilia
- Family: Crocodylidae
- Genus: Crocodylus
- Species: C. porosus
Saltwater Crocodile Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
Fortunately, the remarkable Saltwater Crocodile evolved as native to a comparatively broad swathe of the globe. Interestingly, furthermore, that range roughly straddles the equator. It further does so, by random chance, almost equally across both hemispheres.
This animal appears as far north as the eastern coast of the country of India. From there, its range extends through Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, Cambodia, and Vietnam, to name a few. That range extends as far south as northern Australia.
Wherever it makes an appearance, though, it displays highly specific preferences in terms of habitat. That’s because the remarkable crocodilian makes its home solely along the coastline. Individuals do, however, occasionally swim far out to sea, outside their range.
Most specimens spend the vast majority of their time inhabiting very specific habitat types. These principally consist of river deltas and mangrove swamps. In some regions, the incredible animal also migrate to warmer parts of its range during the local winter season.
The Saltwater Crocodile also differs from most of its kin in yet another manner. Although most crocodilains live as social creatures, this species mainly lives a solitary life. Most individuals, especially the males, further exhibit extremely strong territorial drives.
It also spends much of its time in a lethargic state. This allows it to survive for months at a time without feeding. When it does feed, however, it does so strictly as a carnivore, like other crocodiles. It further represents an apex predator throughout most areas of its range.
Visayan Spotted Deer
Visayan Spotted Deer Facts
- The species appearing next in this compilation of 7 Fabulous Philippines Fauna is the intriguing mammal known as the Visayan Spotted Deer.
- The extremely remarkable creature known commonly by the descriptive name remains somewhat of a mystery to researchers. This primarily holds true due to the startling but true fact that sightings of this astounding animal in the wild rarely occur.
- In the year 2009, researchers found the first evidence of the existence of the animal in the wild in more than 10 years. In addition, it was not until 2012 that the first successful photographing of the gorgeous mammal in its native habitat occurred.
- An estimated 2,500 of the Visayan Spotted Deer live in various locations. Quite unfortunately, these consist of locations such as zoos, around the world. However, its wild population appears to be extremely small, and diminishing.
- Due to its numbers, and the threats it faces, the IUCN lists it as Endangered. Its greatest threat appears to be deforestation. But, hunting by locals threatens it as well. Current estimates place its population at no ore than 300 individuals.
Visayan Spotted Deer Physical Description
Clearly, the marvelous Visayan Spotted Deer represents a physically small species of its kind, proving that size has no bearing on beauty. Despite that fact, however, the rare creature nevertheless remains the largest of the three types of deer in its region.
This magnificent animal also displays only a slight degree of the trait of sexual dimorphism. In its case, the males grow slightly larger than the females. These also develop short, thick antlers. The female, however, does not develop these.
Additionally, an overall average body length of mature adults equals between (49 – 51 in 125 – 130 cm). Shoulder height, meanwhile, averages roughly 28 – 31 in (70 – 80 cm). But adult weight varies quite significantly. This runs from 55 – 176 lb (25 – 80 kg).
The coloring of the Visayan Spotted Deer consists of several patterns. The back and sides tend to be dark brown, while the neck and head appear a lighter shade. Further, the stomach usually presents a creamy-white shade. A pattern of beige spots also dots its sides and back.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Mammalia
- Order: Artiodactyla
- Family: Cervidae
- Genus: Rusa
- Species: R. alfredi
Visayan Spotted Deer Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
The wonderful Visayan Spotted Deer, quite sadly, has an extremely limited natural range. While it once existed on other islands, it now lives in the wild only on two islands These consist of the Visayan islands of Negros and Panay, in the Philippines, in Asia.
Yet, even there, it lives only in specific portions of the islands. These include sections of forest, and the local grasslands. Additionally, it once lived from the shore to the heights. But now, it only thrives in the higher altitudes, up to 6,561 ft (2,000 m).
Also, like all other known types of deer, the Visayan Spotted Deer evolved as entirely herbivorous in terms of its nature. Therefore, its diet typically consists of a limited variety of various buds, grasses, and leaves endemic to the local forest.
It also evolved as primarily nocturnal in nature. As a result, it typically emerges at night to feed in small clearings. In addition, the mammal usually travels in small groups. However, males sometime live solitary lives. Otherwise, researchers know little of its life cycle.
Malaysian Dead Leaf Mantis
Malaysian Dead Leaf Mantis Facts
- Next up among our choices for inclusion in this listing of 7 Fabulous Philippines Fauna we give you the Malaysian Dead Leaf Mantis.
- The most frequently used common name for this marvel of Nature and evolution is the descriptive term that fits it perfectly. The creature’s also, however, sometimes referred to by the somewhat misleading term of the giant dead leaf mantis.
- Professional researchers, though, typically refer to it by its formal scientific name. That term, however, like many such technical names, remains somewhat hard to pronounce. That’s because professionals refer to the insect by the term Deroplatys desiccata.
- Regardless of what one chooses to call it, it’s a fascinating and captivating creature. The alternate common name, though, is slightly misleading. That, however, isn’t at all unusual, as common names frequently give a false impression of the species.
- Though larger than some of its kind, it’s by no means a giant among its roughly 1,800 known related species, overall. It does qualify as a giant, in a way, though. That’s because it attains a somewhat larger size than any other leaf mantis, specifically.
- The highly respected English entomologist, as well as archaeologist, John Obadiah Westwood, made the first recorded recognition of it as a separate and distinct species. This scientifically noteworthy achievement he accomplished in the year 1839.
- Fortunately, its population base appears to be both sizeable and stable. This situation further appears to hold true throughout the entirety of its native range. Unfortunately, it’s also become quite popular among those who keep insects in captivity.
- Due to these facts, the IUCN presently has no listing for the Malaysian Dead Leaf Mantis on its Red List. In the wild, it nevertheless faces several potential threats. Habitat loss poses an potential danger to it, along with the effects of climate change.
Malaysian Dead Leaf Mantis Physical Description
Like virtually all of its many relatives, the magnificent Malaysian Dead Leaf Mantis ranks as a master of camouflage. In its specific case, its own name gives an indication its approach. That’s due to the fact that, when it wishes, it closely resembles a dead, dry leaf.
Like many insects of all kinds, it also displays the physiological characteristic of sexual dimorphism. In its case, this trait manifests itself in terms of sheer physical size. The overall size difference between the two genders, however, remains comparatively minor.
More precisely, the females, again, like many of its relatives, attains a greater length than the male of the species. Mature females reach an average length of 3 – 3.1 in (7.5 – 8 cm). Males, meanwhile, grow to a body length that averages roughly 2.6 – 2.8 in (6.5 – 7 cm).
Otherwise, the two sexes displays virtually identical patterns of coloring, with only slight variations among individuals. Those patterns, though, include a very respectable range of colors. These run from nearly black, to shades of brown, to an orange-brown hue.
The highly extended thorax possesses an extremely flattened shape. It also manifests intricate patterns, like the veins on a leaf, on the upper surface of its wings. The underside, however, has a mainly black background, with a large eye-like spot on each wing.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Arthropoda
- Class: Insecta
- Order: Mantodea
- Family: Deroplatyidae
- Genus: Deroplatys
- Species: D. dessicata
Malaysian Dead Leaf Mantis Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
The mesmerizing Malysian Dead Leaf Mantis inhabits a moderately expansive part of the world. This range consists of the region generally known as southeast Asia. More specifically, it’s known to live in Sumatra, the Philippines, Borneo, Indonesia, and Malaysia.
Within that range, though, it fortunately seems to be moderately adapable in terms of its habitat requirements. That’s due to the fact that specimens appear in regions of both tropical forest and scrubland. For now, no evidence that it ever lived elsewhere exists.
It’s also supremely adapted for the environment in which it lives. Its coloring, as well as its body shape and design, provides it with excellent natural camouflage. The insect even appears to sway in the breeze, mimicking the movements of a dried up leaf.
This learned behavioral pattern serves the amazing arthropod well in its typical habitat range, offering it a certain measure of protection from its own predators. Those include the usual species, such as tree climbing lizards, snakes, and birds, among others.
Like its numerous relatives, the Malaysian Dead Leaf Mantis evolved as a carnivore. Also like them, it’s a master hunter, preferring to hunt as an ambush predator. It feeds opportunistically, consuming virtually any prey of sufficient size, most especially moths.
Philippine Crocodile Facts
- This remarkable member of our compendium of 7 Fabulous Philippine Fauna remains best known be the informative term of the Philippine Crocodile.
- This magnificent work of Nature and evolution most frequently goes by that descriptive name for understandable reasons. It also has other, less often used common names, though. While that’s not uncommon, it has more alternate names than some.
- Sometimes individulas refer to the fabulous reptile as either the bulkarot, the Mindoro crocodile, or the Philippine freshwater crocodile. Scientists, meanwhile typically refer to it by its hard to pronounce official scientific name of the Crocodylus mindorensis.
- The first formal recognition of this marvelous creature as a species, however, did not occur until the year 1935. The respected American herpetologist, Karl Patterson Schmidt, holds the honor of that particular scientifically noteworthy acknowledgment.
- Interestingly, though, experts previously considered the animal to merely be a subspecies of yet another crocodile. In 1989, however, experts determined that it was, in fact, not a subspecies of the New Guinea crocodile, despite beliefs to the contrary.
- Sadly, though, the population of the marvelous Philippine Crocodile plunged drastically in modern times. This occurred mainly due to fishing practices, and exploitation. The IUCN, therefore, listed it as Critically Endangered, on its Red List, in 2008.
- In fact, it’s further considered to be the most highly threatened of all known crocodile species. Thankfully, however, the reptile now enjoys a measure of protection under the law. It nevertheless faces other threats, such as habitat loss and climate change.
Philippine Crocodile Physical Description
Though the incredible Philippine Crocodile easily impresses those who encounter it, the animal does not do so purely to sheer size alone. That’s because, compared to related species, it’s relatively small. Further, it’s actually among the smallest of all crocodilians.
Like many reptiles, though, it displays a slight degree of the physiological characteristic of sexual dimorphism. In its specific case, this trait manifests itself in terms of physical size, alone. In some species, this trait appears in both size and overall appearance.
More specifically, though, the females of this amazing species attain a smaller size than males. That further applies to length and weight. The overall difference, however, remains comparatively minor. This sometimes makes identification difficult for experts.
Between the genders, a mature specimen of the Philippine Crocodile reaches a length measuring approximately 10 ft (3.1 m). The gender-based differnce is more pronounced in weight, however. Males weigh up to 420 lb (190 kg), yet females rarely exceed 200 lb (90 kg).
Like its many relatives, this crocodilian develops thick, bony plates, like armor, covering its body. These further develop especially thick on its back. It also manifests a relatively broad snout. In coloring, it’s a golden-brown shade when young, but darkens as it matures.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Reptilia
- Order: Crocodilia
- Family: Crocodylidae
- Genus: Crocodylus
- Species: C. mindorensis
Philippine Crocodile Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
The very name of the remarkable Philippine Crocodile provides a good indication its native range. That’s due to the fact that the reptile is native to region of the Philippines. For an entire species, however, that’s an extremely limited section of the globe for it to inhabit.
Sadly, though, even within this range it’s lost much of its former territory. That’s because the reptile once appeared throughout the region. Unfortunately, though, it’s now been eradicated in much of the area. Due to this, the animal now appears in only a few areas.
Those highly isolated sections of the overall region further consist solely of the islands of Dalupiri, Luzon and Mindanao. Much of those regions, though, now form National Parks. Like most of its relatives, it displays strong preferences for its choice of habitat.
In each area, though, the majestic reptile lives in the same three types of ecosystem. These zones of habitation consist of either marshes, ponds, or freshwater rivers. It also inhabited the same types of ecosystems in the portions of the region from it has been extirpated.
Like others of its kind, this magnificent crocodilian evolved an entirely carnivorous diet. Also like its many kindred around the world, it feeds opportunistically. Due to the nature of its very limited range, though, certain prey understandably forms the bulk of its diet.
This mainly consists of small mammals, aquatic invertebrates, other reptiles, a few birds, and quantities of fish. Here, the Philippine Crocodile displays an unexpected tendency. That’s due to the fact that it intentionally seeks out ailing fish in a higher ratio to others.
Giant Forest Ant
Giant Forest Ant Facts
- Now making its presence known in this article about these 7 Fabulous Philippines Fauna comes the creature known as the Giant Forest Ant.
- This impressive and distinctive creation of Nature and evolution, quite understandably, most frequently goes by this tantalizing common name. Unlike many species around the world, for the moment the insect has no other common name.
- Professional researchers, meanwhile, generally refer to the remarkable creature by another term. That’s because those professionals usually apply its formal scientific name. That, however, is the less than easily pronounced term of Dinomyrmex gigas.
- The invertebrate received that official name at the hands of the renowned French zoologist, Pierre Andre Latreille. This respected researche made the first recorded acknowledgement of it as a separate and distinct species. That action occurred in 1802.
- Regardless of which term one chooses to employ when referrring to it, though, it stands out from the majority of its kin. It also represents the only known member of its genus, further distinguishing it. One known subspecies does appear to exist, however.
- The Giant Forest Ant appears to be maintaining a population base that’s both stable and sizeable. That condition further seems to hold true throughout the entirety of its native range. The IUCN, therefore, currently has no listing for it on its Red List.
- This majestic arthropod nevertheless must be considered to be facing at least some threats, like most species. These naturally include the potential danger of habitat loss. Its greatest threat, however, most likely consists of the ongoing peril of climate change.
Giant Forest Ant Physical Description
The amazing Giant Forest Ant impresses those whoe encounter if for various reasons, of course. Likely its most impressive feature, however, is its sheer size. That’s due to the fact that this particular variety of ant ranks as one of the largest in the entire world.
It further qualifies as the largest of all known ants in its region of the world. Sizes vary between individuals, of course, due to the very nature of ants. That’s because members of different castes have different attributes. That statistic extends to sheer size as well.
Normal workers within each colony attain an average overall length measuring an impressive 0.82 in (20.9 mm). The significantly larger soldiers of each colony, however, grow much larger. Members of that caste attain an average length of roughly 1.11 in (28.1 mm).
The queens, meanwhile, reach even greater sizes, as holds true for most known ants. Each queen of this remarkable invertebrate grows to about 1.22 in (31 mm) in overall length. These measurements truly drive home the incredible size of these invertebrates!
The physical appearance of the Giant Forest Ant, apart from its size, strongly parallels other ants. It does manifest bright yellow fur on its legs, unlike others. The main body shows a dark brown shade, yet the posterior displays a much lighter, reddish-brown hue.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Arthropoda
- Class: Insecta
- Order: Hymenoptera
- Family: Formicidae
- Genus: Dinomyrmex
- Species: D. gigas
Giant Forest Ant Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
The marvelous Giant Forest Ant appears to inhabit a moderately large swathe of the globe. More specifically, the arthropod inhabits much of the southeastern portions of the continent of Asia. It’s still unclear, however, if the arthropod ever possessed a greater range.
The northern-most region of its range includes the countries of Thailand and the Philippines, though separated by a large area of ocean. From there, though, it extends its range through parts of Malaysia and Borneo, and into much of the country of Indonesia.
In all regions that it inhabits, however, the invertebrate displays strong preferences in its choice of ecosystems to dwell in. Primarily, the insect makes its home, as the name implies, in the relatively dense regions of rainforest found throughout this region of the world.
Yet this intrepid product of millions of years of evolution also appears, though, in smaller concentrations, in a few other types of habitat. These varying habitats might surprise, many, as they include such diverse areas as regions of mangrove forest, and peat swamps.
The extraordinary creature also lives at a wide range of altitudes, unlike some related species. In point of fact, it makes appearances from near sea level to (1,500 m) above sea level. There, the animal sometimes makes its home in regions of montane forest.
The impressive Giant Forest Ant also differs from many of its relatives in its behavioral patterns. Most ants forage primarily by day, but not this one. These productive ants conduct the great majority of the their activities at night, including, of course, foraging.
The vast majority of the diet of this ant, an impressive 90 percent, consists of honeydew. The remainder includes small insects, such as winged termites. The animal also consumes smaller quantities of such food as nectar, sap, and even quantities of bird droppings.
Malaysian Flying Fox
Malaysian Flying Fox Facts
- Appearing in this position in this compilation of 7 Fabulous Philippines Fauna comes the intriguing Malaysian Flying Fox.
- The truly remarkable creature most commonly known by this somewhat deceptive term represents a species of megabat endemic to Southeast Asia. In addition, the mammal also remains one of the largest known species of bat on earth.
- Further, the impressive creature also goes by alternate common names. These include such terms as the kalang, and the greater flying fox. Its scientific name, however, remains the somewhat difficult to pronounce Pteropus vampyrus.
- Like all fruit bats from the Old World, this remarkably impressive creature possesses a characteristic that surprises many people. To the great surprise of many individuals, the amazing animal lacks the ability to echolocate like other bats.
- However, given its great size, one particular fact remains encouraging to note, This holds true due to the fact that this astonishing species has an entirely herbivorous diet. Otherwise, its great size could pose a legitimate threat to livestock.
- But, most unfortunately, the population numbers of the fabulous Malaysian Flying Fox appear to be diminishing rapidly. Consequently, the IUCN currently lists the scientifically impressive animal as Near Threatened. This appears on its Red List.
- Climate change and habitat loss presently pose the greatest threats to its continued existence. Thankfully, several concerted conservation efforts remain underway. But, these unfortunately continue to be complicated by the actions of man.
Malaysian Flying Fox Physical Description
The Malaysian Flying Fox stands out from related species by virtue of its physical size. The enormous mammal represents one of the largest known species of bat on earth. In point of fact, it develops an impressive average wingspan measuring as much as 5 ft (1.5 m).
Much like many types of mammals, it displays a slight degree of sexual dimorphism. In its case, this presents itself in terms of the nature of its fur. This holds true due to the fact that the fur of the males generally tends to be longer and thicker than that of the female.
This remarkable animal also attains an astonishing weight for its type of creature. Amazingly, mature adult specimens weigh an average of 2.4 lb (1.2 kg). As a result of this, it sometimes appears slow in flight. Nevertheless, it’s renowned for being highly maneuverable.
In a coincidence of evolution, the Malaysian Flying Fox also possesses a somewhat fox-like face. This coincidental resemblance serves as the origin of the common name. Much of the large body also has a covering of long, thick fur. This displays a reddish-brown color.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Mammalia
- Order: Chiroptera
- Family: Pteopodidae
- Genus: Pteropus
- Species: P. vampyrus
Malaysian Flying Fox Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
The sincerely amazing Malaysian Flying Fox known habitat range apparently covers a fairly large area of the world. This holds true due to the fact that this extends from the Malay Peninsula to the Philippines, Sumatra, Borneo, Java, and even Timor.
Additionally, it also appears to be comparatively adaptable in its habitat. As a result, it sometimes appears at elevations of as much as 4,490 ft (1,370 m). Furthermore, though it prefers the higher elevations, the mammal also inhabits lower regions when necessary.
Further, in some portions of its habitat range, this magnificent creature even lives in a most unusual range for its type of creature. This holds true since it even appears along coastlines. However, it does show a decided preference for areas further inland.
In point of fact, the marvelous bat most commonly lives in regions such as dense mangrove forest, primary forests, coconut groves, and even large fruit orchards. Also, the groupings in mangrove forest usually remain smaller than those in other areas.
But, the continually surprising Malaysian Flying Fox evolved yet another characteristic that amazes the casual observer. That’s the tendency of the fascinating mammal to often live in extremely large colonies. While many bats do, it takes this to another level.
This mammal comes together in groups perhaps more properly called super-groups. Some of these colonies have been known to number as many as 20,000 individuals. Finally, given its particular feeding habits, it exclusively consumes flowers, nectar, and various fruits.
Emerald Swallowtail Facts
- The final entry into this article about 7 Fabulous Philippines Fauna consists of the beautiful Lepidoptera known as the Emerald Swallowtail.
- This dazzling natural marvel bears several common names, the most frequently used being the one used here. The other terms often applied to it, though, include those of the emerald peacock and the deceptive term of green-banded peacock.
- Its official scientific name, however, remains much more difficult to pronounce. That because professionals use the term Papilio palinurus to formally refer to it. By either of these names, however, it easily ranks as one of the most beautiful of Lepidoptera.
- A total of 6 recognized subspecies also exist of this insect. Perhaps somewhat miraculously, for the moment, each of these subspecies, as well as the Emerald Swallowtail, appears on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, as Least Concern.
- That fact owes its existence to several factors. The first of these is the fact that it evolved as native to a relatively large area. The second reason may be less laudable, but nonetheless does play a role in protecting and helping to insure its continued survival.
- That’s because this marvelous butterfly consistently ranks as one of the most popular in butterfly houses around the world. Though certainly pleasing, the fortunate fact of its relative safety from extinction could easily change in the near future, however.
- Within its native habitat range, the marvelous work of Nature faces several threats. The actions of collectors remains one of these, of course. Its greatest peril, though, no doubt consists of the ongoing and ever-increasing effects of climate change.
Emerald Swallowtail Physical Description
The magnificent Emerald Swallowtail impresses those who see it many ways. Unlike some beautiful Lepidoptera, however, it does so not only with its visual splendor, but in terms of sheer size, as well. In point of fact, it’s a larger than average variety of butterfly.
Also distinguishing itself from many other butterflies, this breathtaking beauty does not display any noticeable sexual dimorphism. Distinguishing males from females, therefore, can be quite difficult for the untrained observer. Both sexes are gorgeous, though.
Individuals of both genders attain an average wingspan of between 3.1 – 3.9 in (8 – 10 cm). Astonishingly, though, the top and bottom of the two wings display radically different patterns. While that’s not uncommon, this species takes the principle to a high level.
The top side serves as the origin of the various common names, including that of Emerald Swallowtail. That’s due to the amazing green color displayed. This ranges from dark green, to a shade that’s almost black. It also shows dark green bands in a V shape.
The underside, meanwhile, shows a completely different pattern. This primarily consists of shades of back. Numerous blue, white, and orange spots further appear here. These typically manifest themselves along the edges of the hindwings of the insect, though.
Astonishingly, these colors do not form due to natural pigments, as in the vast majority on insects. These in fact appear due to the presence of countless tiny naturally occurring prisms. Light refracting through these creates the magnificent colors perceived.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Arthropoda
- Class: Insecta
- Order: Lepidoptera
- Family: Papilionidae
- Genus: Papilio
- Species: P. palinurus
Emerald Swallowtail Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
The Emerald Swallowtail has a comparatively wide range. This is fortunate for both it and those who appreciate its beauty. That’s due to the fact that the incredible arthropod evolved as native to a broad portion of what now constitutes the continent of Asia.
More specifically, though, it appears naturally in a range that extends from the Philippines to southern portions of India. The wonderful insect even, for the moment, at least, holds small yet stable populations on some of the islands included in that impressive range.
Like most species, it also has specific preferences for its choice of habitat. It nonetheless proves itself adaptable when the need presents itself. In Nature, the creature generally lives in various open areas. These principally include forest clearings and along river banks.
It does, however, also often appear in and around empty lots, city parks, and even human habitations. In each of these habitats, it nevertheless displays specific dietary patterns. The caterpillar form feeds almost exclusively on plants in the citrus and rue families.
The adults, meanwhile, solely feed on nectar. This typically, though not exclusively, comes from the same plants as the younger form. The Emerald Swallowtail also serves as an important pollinator for many local species. Males even establish firm territorial boundaries.
7 Fabulous Philippines Fauna
We truly hope that you have all thoroughly enjoyed reading, and hopefully learning from, this article about 7 Fabulous Philippines Fauna. It’s also our fervent hope that doing so has left you with either a new or renewed appreciation for the many wonders of Nature.
Sadly, many of the other species throughout the world now find themselves facing dire threats to their continued existence. Many of those dangers stem from the actions of man. We must do all that we can to protect and preserve the many wondrous species on earth.