Endangered Bhutan Glory butterfly released

ZIRO, Oct 8: Lower Subansiri Deputy Commissioner Swetika Sachan on Wednesday released a full-grown Bhutan Glory butterfly into its natural habitat.

Rare and endangered, the Bhutan Glory is a species of the swallowtail butterfly of the Papilionidae family and was discovered in 1868 by Dr R Lidderdale of the Bengal Army. It is protected in India under Schedule II of the WPA, 1972.

In Arunachal, it has been recorded in Lower Subansiri district (Talle Wildlife Sanctuary), West Kameng (Eaglenest) and Upper Siang, and is a tourist attraction.

During one of his visits to the Talle Valley Wildlife Sanctuary in October 2019, Dr Joram Khopey (a pathologist at Gyati Takka General Hospital, Ziro) along with tour operator Koj Mama had sighted the eggs of these butterflies, and they relocated the host plant with the eggs to Ziro.

After a year of strenuous monitoring and care, the full-grown Bhutan Glory was released into the wilderness on Wednesday.

To protect and conserve the rare and endangered butterfly, Dr Khopey and Mama studied the lifecycle of the butterfly with permission from the competent authority.

This is probably the first study of the lifecycle of the Bhutan Glory (lidderdalii) in the country.

Sachan congratulated the entire team for their unique effort in conserving the rare species, and assured all assistance for initiatives that would help in conserving the ecosystem.

Members of NgunuZiro, homestay owners, nature enthusiasts and forest officials were also present during the release of the Bhutan Glory. (DIPRO)