Kaiser-i-Hind

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The Kaiser-i-Hind (Teinopalpus imperialis) is a rare species of swallowtail butterfly found from Nepal and north India east to north Vietnam. The common name literally means “Emperor of India”. The Kaiser-i-hind is much sought after by butterfly collectors for its beauty and rarity.[citation needed] The green iridiscence of the wings has been found to be due to three-dimensional photonic structure of the scales and is the subject of much research.

The Kaiser-i-hind, like the Bhutan Glory is unmistakable and cannot be confused with any other butterfly. A predominantly green swallowtail, the male has a bright

The following descriptions are from Bingham, C. T (1907) The Fauna of British India, Including Ceylon and Burma. Butterflies Volume 2.

Upperside black, densely irrorated with green scales. Forewing: an outwardly oblique, slightly concave subbasal band and a narrow terminal edging jet-black due to the ground-colour there being devoid of the green scaling; beyond the subbasal band the irroration of scales a much brighter green, especially along the outer edge of the subbasal band itself; but along obscure, broad and convergent discal and postdiscal transverse bands and along a subterminal much narrower band, the green scaling thins out and the black ground-colour of the wing shows through; in some specimens, owing to the transparency of the wings, the rich ochraceous-brown colour of the underside gives the black on these bands a reddish tint. Hind wing: basal area margined outwardly by a narrow irregularly sinuous band devoid of green scaling, succeeded by an upper discal bright chrome-yellow patch that spreads from base of interspace 3 across the apex of the cell and bases of interspaces 4 and 5 to the costa; this patch is bluntly angulated outwards in interspace 5, stained with orange anteriorly and bordered outwardly by black which is widest above; below the patch a white line extends to the dorsum; the postdiscal area is deep dark green, margined inwardly by diffuse dark grey and followed outwardly by a subterminal series of lunular markings, the tornal and upper two or three of which are yellow, the rest bright green; tail tipped with yellow. Underside: basal area of both fore and hind wings densely covered with green scales. Forewing: terminal two-thirds rich ochraceous brown, the green of the basal area bordered by black; discal and postdiscal bands also black, widened and diffusely coalescent posteriorly; an incomplete, very slender subterminal black line and broader black terminal edging, neither of which reaches to the apex. Hindwing much as on the upperside, but the yellow marking broader. Antennae dark red; head, thorax and abdomen black, covered somewhat densely with green hairs and scales.

The butterfly is found small pockets in Nepal, Bhutan and along the Eastern Himalayas in India (West Bengal, Meghalaya, Assam, Sikkim and Manipur). It is also found in northern Myanmar, northern Vietnam and in the Sichuan province of China. Mostly seen above 6,000 feet (1,800 m). source

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