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Snow Flat

Tagiades trebellius martinus


Hesperiidae; Pyrginae;Tagiades trebellius martinus Plötz, 1884 "Spread-winged skippers bask with their wings held wide open. The wings are held closed when they are at rest. They are usually brown, black, or checkered, but some are brilliantly coloured. Some have long tailed hind wings."


At around 8:30 in the morning, I spotted a pupa on a leaf of a Purple Yam (Dioscorea alata). I had never before seen one quite like it. So I decided to snip off the leaf and keep it in a breeding cage for observation. Of course, all my cages were fully occupied, as usual. So I placed this leaf with the pupa on a clean wad of paper kitchen towel inside a semi translucent white plastic bucket with a perforated lid. My intention was to observe it and maybe take a picture each day until "something" eclosed. The following afternoon, I saw that the pupal case was empty and there was a Skipper flying around inside the bucket. There were also some incredibly large pellets of frass on the paper towel. This was astonishing because the pellets were much bigger than the frass of Hawk Moth larvae (in neighbouring cages). I released this beautiful Skipper into our garden immediately and watch speed away out of sight.


Wikipedia has an article on Tagiades trebellius, in which the author lists 6 ssp. This list does not include T. t. martinus and, in fact does not include any ssp. in Philippines. To be fair, there is an "edit" button, but people like me who are constantly looking for expert assistance in identifying species, are unlikely to click on that button. My best advice to all amateur enthusiasts like me is to check and double check everything you see or read and if you still have doubts, seek help from a reliable source. But I guess that this is why we are all here together in Project Noah - to help each other.

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John B.
Spotted by
John B.

Palauig, Central Luzon, Philippines

Spotted on Jul 24, 2016
Submitted on May 7, 2022

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