Graphium doson

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Common Jay
RN017 Graphium doson.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Papilionidae
Genus: Graphium
Species: G. doson
Binomial name
Graphium doson
C&R Felder, 1864

The Common Jay (Graphium doson) is a black, tropical papilionid butterfly with pale blue semi-transparent central wing bands that are formed by large spots. There is a marginal series of smaller spots. The underside of wings is brown with markings similar to upperside but whitish in color. The sexes look alike.


It is widespread and common throughout Southeast Asia, including lower elevations in Sri Lanka and Southern India, Eastern Ghats, Satpuras, Bengal Assam and Bangladesh, and the Himalayan foothills. The species is however scarce in southern Honshū, Japan.


Common in thick, riparian, moist, deciduous, semi-evergreen and evergreen forests.


The Common Jay is active throughout the day and constantly on the move; it rarely settles down. Its flight is swift and straight.When feeding from flowers, it never settles down, and keeps its wings vibrating. The males are seen mud-puddling, often in tight groups.


  • G. d. doson
  • G. d. robinson

Life cycle[edit]


The spherical and pale yellow eggs are laid singly on the underside of leaves.


The caterpillar is somewhat spindle-shaped. The grown caterpillars have two forms, dark brown or grassy green. There are spines on the 4th segment which are short, conicle and blue-centered surrounded by lemmon yellow and then black rings. The osmeterium is pale bluish green. It is extruded only reluctantly.


The pupa is pale green with a dark purplish median line from the head to the thoracic horn and a yellow line from the tip of the horn to the cremaster.

Images of life cycle[edit]


The caterpillars feed on plants of the families Annonaceae, Lauraceae, Magnoliaceae such as Annona lawii, Cinnamomum macrocarpum, Magnolia grandiflora, Michelia champaca, Milliusa tomentosum and Polyalthia longifolia.



See also[edit]