This comprehensive work describes and discusses the lives of all 247 species of butterflies in Sri Lanka and illustrates the adults of both sexes with colour photographs taken in the field. Additionally, the egg, larva and pupa of each species whose life history is known are illustrated. Several images portray rare species and behaviours that have not been documented before.
The first few chapters cover the history of the study of butterflies in Sri Lanka and their biogeography, classification, morphology, distribution, and conservation. An account of each species details identification, similar species, status, distribution, habitat, adult behaviour, immature stages, larval food plants, and, for threatened species, conservation concerns. Supplemental material includes a species list with the common name, scientific name and authorities, endemic status, and distribution by climatic zone, as well as a list of larval food plants and adult nectar sources. The book rounds off with a bibliography, a glossary and an index of the scientific and common names of the butterflies.
As a reference and an essential guide to the butterfly fauna of Sri Lanka, this book will interest, not only Sri Lankans and butterfly enthusiasts, students, professional entomologists, biologists and conservationists around the world, but also the general reader who is fascinated by these beautiful creatures.
George van der Poorten has a B.Sc. (Agriculture) from the University of Peradeniya in Sri Lanka and a M.Sc. (1979) and Ph.D (1982) from the Ontario Agricultural College, University of Guelph. In retirement, he and his wife Nancy have undertaken an intensive study of the butterflies of the island of Sri Lanka. He edited "Butterfly conservation action plan of Sri Lanka" (2012) and authored "The taxonomy and conservation status of butterflies in Sri Lanka" (2016), as well as several articles with his wife.
Nancy E. van der Poorten has a Bachelor of Science in Botany from the University of Guelph. She has specialized in the study of the dragonflies of Sri Lanka and has described three species new to science. She is also the author or co-author of several scientific publications on dragonflies, and is co-author of Dragonfly Fauna of Sri Lanka: Distribution and Biology, with Threat Status of its Endemics (2014). She is past president of the Toronto Entomologists’ Association in Canada and president-elect (2015–17) of the Worldwide Dragonfly Association.