William Stephen Atkinson, in 1873, was the first to describe the insect.
This species will typically move slowly and erratically at treetop level. Coupled with its natural coloring, this often makes it difficult to see in the shadows. Natural evasive tactics plus camouflage. In this manner, they routinely travel from hilltop to hilltop.
Lamentably, their beauty is, due to human greed, also their curse. The Bhutan Glory remains highly sought after by collectors.
Bhutan Glory Physical Characteristics
This is a relatively large species of butterfly which attains an average wingspan of approximately 4.3 in (11 cm). Also, sexual dimorphism is not noticeably present.
The upper side of the wings is usually a dull black in color, providing the camouflage in the shade of the trees. However, thin, cream-colored striations are visible, and they cross the wings in a vertical manner.
Their wings, on the underside, display similar colors. Additionally, in a wonderful contrast, small colored patches appear at the base of both the upper and lower wings.
Bhutan Glory Distribution and Habitat
The extent of the original habitat range of the Bhutan Glory is unclear. However, currently, their populations remain limited to only a few locations including Bhutan. This serves as the source of the common name. Additional regions also include parts of Southeast Asia and Northeast India.
Within this area, they generally inhabit altitudes ranging between 5,000-9,000 ft (1,524-2,743 m). In fact, for reasons still unknown, the Bhutan Glory usually prefers forests on mountain ridges to valleys.