Banana Skipper

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Banana skipper

A ‘friend’ or a ‘foe’? This butterfly, my garden friend, is actually a pest.

Banana skipper or Palm redeye (Erionota thrax) is a pest of banana plants as these are the host plants for their larvae.
One fine morning I observed that the leaves of my banana plants are almost gone! Though I tried, could not locate the eggs. After hatching, the caterpillars move towards the outer edge of the leaf where they feed and roll the leaf to make a shelter. They also exude a fine white powdery material over their body and pupates in this leaf roll.

You can see the plant here, destroyed by the larvae.

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Larva
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Leaf roll- pupa
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Host plant

 

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16 thoughts on “Banana Skipper

    1. Remember, caterpillars are temporary pests, although (depending on the plant), they come back for egg laying to the same host plant. They can defoliate the plant, but never kill it. They mostly give it a good ‘haircut’.

      Liked by 1 person

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