The election was held on Sunday at the Bombay Natural History Society’s or BNHS’s event ‘Breakfast with Butterflies’ wherein around 150 Mumbaikars voted for the five shortlisted winged jewels.
“Common Mormon won by more than 69 votes, and the closest competitor was Tailed Jay with 35 votes. The other three butterflies that were shortlisted included Plain Tiger, which received 28 votes; Common Emigrant, which got 17, and Common Crow, which got nine,” said Atul Sathe, spokesperson for BNHS. Common Mormon is scientifically called Papilio Polytes.
One of the main criteria for voting for a butterfly was that it should be a species commonly found in Mumbai, apart from it being the most charismatic. The aim is to promote conservation and increase butterfly-watching among people.
BNHS deputy director Dr V Shubhalaxmi said, “Common Mormon resonates the spirit of the city by being elegant and beautiful, yet street smart to remain grounded. Like any Mumbaikar, Common Mormon fights the odds of life by adjusting with its environment by adopting a strategy of mimicry, and as young Mumbaikars love their food with a dash of curry leaf tadka and drops of lemon juice, so does the Common Mormon’s caterpillar.”
What’s Common about Mormon
Has a swallowtail butterfly belonging to the family of Papilionidae.
The females mimic two distasteful butterflies such as Common Rose and Crimson Rose.
In its third form the female mimics the male itself.
It lay eggs on Lemon and Curry leaves plant Its caterpillar in its initial stages looks like a bird dropping.