Watakakakaka...can't figure out where the kakas end , just like in banananana. Getting the name to stop at the right place is a lot easier than identifying the plant in the wild. I am equipped with pretty decent photos of the host plants of butterflies along with their :
1. Common name
2. The vernacular name
3.The botanical name
4. Classification details
5. Fairly good description of what it flowers like , seeds like , fruits like, smells like or tastes like.
But it is God given talent to actually identify them - thats something that's hopelessly missing with me . Why ? I can't even place people's faces even if I saw them everyday. And these are green leaves , all looking similiar.
I need a botanist . A good one ! We had the good fortune of two of them visiting us . One was the page ( pronounced paa-gay ) family - Nuvendu was damn good ! The other was Nandan Kalbag . Wish we had atleast one of such treasures in Goa !
Meanwhile it is a painful trial and error . The wrong plants would invariablely sprout leaves instantly and the correct ones would shrivel and dry. And the ambitious butterfly breeding program takes a few steps behind.
Some of the success stories :
Southern Birdwings on some aristolochia plant ( maybe tagala or indica )
Tamil lacewings on passion fruit creeper
Giant Redeyes and palm fly on yellow palm
Common Mime on cinnamon
Blue Mormon on lemon and orange shrubs
Blue Tiger Moth on the freshwater mangrove
Monkey puzzle on Ixora
Red Pierrots on kalanchoe and bryophyllum
Baron on mango
Tawny Costers on passion flower
Common Mormons on curry leaves ( Murraya indica )
Yamfly on smilax
Lascar on zizypus.....and sailors on God knows what