List of butterflies of India
India has an extremely diverse terrain, climate and vegetation, which comprises extremes of heat and cold, of desert and jungle, of low lying plains and the highest mountains, of dryness and dampness, islands and continental areas, widely varying flora, and sharply marked seasons. India forms a large part of the Indomalayan biogeographical zone; many of the floral and faunal forms show Malayan affinities with some taxa being unique to the Indian region. In addition, India hosts three of the world's biodiversity hotspots : the Western Ghats, the Eastern Himalayas, and the hilly ranges bordering India and Myanmar, each having numerous endemic species. Accordingly India's diverse and varied fauna include a rich heritage in butterflies and moths. Brig W. H. Evans recorded approximately 1439 species of butterfly from British India, including Ceylon and Burma. After 1947, the rise of several new nations led to a reduction of the area forming part of India proper, and the number of species dropped to an estimated 1200 species.
The following is a list of the butterflies of India. The families and the numbers of species in them, 1163 of which are listed below, are likely to change due to advances in taxonomy and collection of data regarding occurrence and distribution.
- Papilionidae - swallowtail butterflies (84 species)
- Pieridae - yellow and white butterflies (81 species)
- Nymphalidae - brush-footed butterflies (439 species)
- Danainae (26 species)
- Morphinae (20 species)
- Satyrinae (176 species)
- Limenitidinae (99 species)
- Libytheinae (3 species)
- Charaxinae (16 species)
- Calinaginae (3 species)
- Heliconiinae (27 species)
- Cyrestinae (10 species)
- Pseudergolinae (1 species)
- Biblidinae (4 species)
- Apaturinae (17 species)
- Nymphalinae (37 species)
- Lycaenidae - blues, hairstreaks and gossamer-winged butterflies (318 species)
- Riodinidae - punches & judies (16 species)
- Hesperiidae - skipper butterflies (225 species)
India has 28 states and 7 union territories. The checklist of butterflies for each state can be found using the index below:
- Andhra Pradesh
- Arunachal Pradesh
- Himachal Pradesh
- Jammu and Kashmir
- Madhya Pradesh
- Tamil Nadu
- Uttar Pradesh
- West Bengal
- Andaman and Nicobar Islands
- Dadra and Nagar Haveli
- Daman and Diu
- Evans, W. H. (1932) The Identification of Indian Butterflies, pp 1
- Evans, W. H. (1932) The Identification of Indian Butterflies, pp 23
- Beccaloni, G. W., Scoble, M. J., Robinson, G. S. & Pitkin, B. (Editors). 2003. The Global Lepidoptera Names Index (LepIndex). World Wide Web electronic publication. http://www.nhm.ac.uk/entomology/lepindex [accessed 6 January 2007]
- Collins, N. M. & M. G. Morris (1985) Threatened Swallowtail Butterflies of the World. IUCN. ISBN 2-88032-603-6
- Evans, W. H. (1932) The Identification of Indian Butterflies. (2nd Ed), Bombay Natural History Society, Mumbai, India
- Gay, T., Kehimkar, I. & J. C. Punetha (1992) Common Butterflies of India. WWF-India and Oxford University Press, Mumbai, India.
- Haribal, M. (1992) Butterflies of Sikkim Himalaya and their Natural History. Sikkim Nature Conservation Foundation, Gangtok, Sikkim, India.
- Kunte, K. (2005) Butterflies of Peninsular India. Universities Press.
- Kehimkar, I. (2008) The Book of Indian Butterflies. Bombay Natural History Society and Oxford University Press, Mumbai, India.
- Wynter-Blyth, M. A. (1957) Butterflies of the Indian Region, Bombay Natural History Society, Mumbai, India.
- Basu Roy Arjan, Das Rudra Prasad & Mukherjee P (2007) A pictorial guide : Butterflies of Bengal Plains, Yapanchitra Books and Nature Mates, Kolkata, India.
- Viswanathan Geetha., Poornima Ramanujam & Harpreet Singh. (2000) Comparative study of biodiversity of butterflies between Bangalore and Jammu region. Indian J. of Environ. & Ecoplan. 3:599-602.
- Butterflies of Meghalaya
- Oriental Nymphalidae
- Butterfly taxonomy
- Western Ghats list
- Markku Savela's pages
- Heiner Ziegler's pages
- Indian Wildlife Act and scheduled species lists