<i>Hypolycaena erylus </i>feeding on mangrove apple and attended by <i>Oecophylla </i>weaver ants, in North Sulawesi, Indonesia (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae).
Keywords: Asia, behavior, biology, ecology, Formicidae, Hymenoptera, intertidal habitats, Indo-Pacific, larvae, mangroves, mutualism, ant-lycaenid association, myrmecophily, Rhizophoraceae, Sonneratiaceae
AbstractLarvae of the common hairstreak of the Indo-Pacific tropics, Hypolycaena erylus (Godart), were observed for the first time to feed on the leaves of the mangrove apple, Sonneratia alba (Sonneratiaceae), in the intertidal habitats of Bunaken, North Sulawesi, Indonesia. S. alba appears to be a preferred host plant of H. erylus in mangrove habitats where larvae are attended by the Indo-Australian weaver ants, Oecophylla smaragdina. Early instars were found in the ants' arboreal nest, while late instars were free-roaming, being attended by the weaver ants.