notes from Hong Kong

Roger C. KENDRICK kendrick at
Mon Nov 30 15:07:22 EST 1998

I guess that it's time I posted a note on the butterflies flying around Hong
Kong (as everyone else seems to be running out of sightings north of about 40°N
and there are so few notes from the tropics or south of the equator). The
weather here has been a little unseasonal; more like a dank February, with low
mists and cool temperatures (minima at sea level is around 18°C to 20°C at the
moment, but daytime maxima only two or three °C higher) and virtually no
sunshine since last wednesday. There have, all the same, been a few butterflies
prominent over the last week: males of the Blue Admiral (Kaniska canace,
Nymphalinae) patrolling any likely sheltered suntraps, small grass blues
(Zizeena spp.) in abundance on any patch of short turf and the Common White
(Pieris canidia) very noticeable just about anywhere. There has been a large
movement of several Danainae species from the north-east, especially Danaus
genutia and Common Crow (Euploea core), with the Blue Glassy Tiger (Ideopsis
similis) in smaller numbers; one report is of upto two hundred individuals of
these three species being trapped every hour upon reaching the restricted area
fence at Mai Po Marshes nature reserve, which overlooks the border zone with
Shenzhen on the "Mainland" of China.
Up at the Kadoorie Agric. Res. Ctr (200m / 650ft) in the heart of Hong Kong's
New Territories, there are still plenty of other butterfly species on the wing;
Papilio paris and Papilio bianor were seen yesterday and several Neptini
(Limenitis, Neptis, Parathyma) species are still patrolling in the tops of the
shrubs and trees. Some late flying Great Orange Tips (Hebomoiea glaucippus)
briefly cavorted around the KARC buildings before flying out of view up towards
the top of the nearest hill.
On top of all that, one of the local terrestrial TV channels aired a 25 minute
program on the Hong Kong Lepidoptera Group last week; unfortunately for non
Cantonese speakers this was broadcast on the Cantonese channel, with Chinese
(i.e. for Mandarin speakers!) subtitles. From what I was told by some of the
other HKLG members (HK-Chinese), the program was well produced. I've heard
several other comments from non HKLG members, all positive and most saying they
enjoyed the program. I shall be seeing if it's possible to post short sections
on the HKLG website in the near future.

As an aside for English cricket followers: the HK University social X (one man
short!, mostly English supporters) beat Lamma Island C.C. Social X (also one
man short; mostly Aussie supporters) by 113 runs on Sunday (HKU 221 for 3, 35
overs; Lamma 108 all out, 26.5 overs) - a small return on the heavy defeat just
inflicted by the Aussies in the Ashes match!

Happy record processing for those of you in cooler climes!



Roger C. KENDRICK   B.Sc.(Hons.)
PhD student & Demonstrator, Dept of Ecology & Biodiversity
The University of Hong Kong
mailto:kendrick at   « Hong Kong Moths »   « H.K. Lepidoptera Group »
mail: Kadoorie Agricultural Research Centre
      The University of Hong Kong
      Lam Kam Road, Shek Kong,
      Yuen Long, New Territories
      Hong Kong
fax: (852) 24885285

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