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Pests of Citrus :: Major Pests:: Citrus butterfly


8. Citrus butterfly: Papilio demoleus, P. polytes (Papilionidae: Lepidoptera)


Distribution and Status: All over the world Africa, greater part of Asia, Thailand and Japan.

Host range: Citrus and other Rutaceae plants. Eg. Aegle marmelos


Damage symptoms

The young larvae found on the upper surface of leaves, feeding on the leaf lamina from margin to midrib.  Grown up larvae feed on matured leaves and cause severe defoliation of the entire plant.


Female lays 183 pale or greenish yellow eggs in groups of 2-3 eggs on leaves, egg period 6-8 days.  Early instar resemble bird droppings. Grown up larvae yellowish green with horn like structure on the dorsal side of the last body segment. Larval period 8-16 days in summer and four weeks during November to December. Larvae eat their own exuviae after each moult. Full grown larva spins a girdle around its body and pupates on a twig, pupal period 8-11 days. Adult with black head and thorax, creamy yellow coloration on the underside of the abdomen, wings dull black, ornamented with yellow markings and black clubbed antenna.





    • Hand pick various stages of the pest in nurseries new orchards.
    • Spray entomogenous fungus, Bacillus thuringiensis 1 g /L nematode DD- 136 strain or neem seed extract 3%.
    • Spray endosulfan 35 EC 1.5 L or quinalphos  25 EC or carbaryl 50 WP 2.0 L in 1500-2000 L of water per ha during April and October.