September is being marked as the Big Butterfly Month-India across the country in order to celebrate butterflies.
Butterfly habitats: Butterflies are often ignored in the hustle and bustle of the national capital, but at the same time efforts are on to ensure that these insects have a space where they can sustain. According to a report in IE, the month of September is being marked as the Big Butterfly Month-India across the country in order to celebrate butterflies as well as conserving their habitats. As a part of the celebration, a ‘butterfly walk’ was organised at the Asola Bhatti Wildlife Sanctuary in New Delhi, during which Sohail Madan of the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) was cited by the report as saying that butterflies had a close relationship with plants. Madan added that once the eggs are laid by butterflies on the leaves, they never see their offspring again, and the plant acts as the surrogate mother for the eggs.
During the walk, enthusiasts could see 16 species of butterflies in a span of 30 minutes, while walking for three to four hours could bring the walker face to face with about 30-40 species.
Butterflies help in pollination, but according to Madan that is only the secondary role that the winged insects play in the ecosystem. He said that the primary role the butterflies play in the ecosystem is to constitute food for other creatures in all of their life stages. As caterpillars, they serve as food for birds, spiders as well as wasps, while as adults they are supposed to procreate. Out of the hundreds of eggs the butterflies lay as adults, only two need to sustain for a stable population to be maintained. Hence, if the butterflies end up disappearing, the food cycle is disrupted. A few years ago, the BNHS decided to develop a butterfly corridor in the national capital by building habitats for the insects, and so far, the group has succeeded in creating 67 such habitats for the butterflies connecting forest patches in the city so that the insects can safely travel and become more diverse without any major threats.