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There is evidence of the world’s largest Queen Alexandra Birdwing Butterfly found in the Inaina area of Kairuku, Central Province.
If it can be further proven to be so, it will not be unique only to the Managalas plateau of the Oro Province.
Executive Director of Partners with Melanesia Ken Mondiai revealed today at the FM100 Talk Back show.
He said he was working at the Inaina Wildlife Management area with people when he noticed the butterfly which had huge wings, was green and had some black spots, and a bit of yellow.
“I’ve seen many of that in the Managalas plateau,” he said.
They brought in an entomologist, Cornwall Nukara who is from the Oro Province and was quite well versed with the Queen Alexandra Birdwing Butterfly-it’s total wing span is about 30cm.
After concluding a four days survey at Inaina, he confirmed there was evidence of the presence of the Queen Alexandra Birdwing Butterfly.
He however said the other two second and third largest butterflies, the Goliath Birdwing Butterfly (15-18 cm total wing span) and the Niugini Birdwing Butterfly (6-10cm total wing span) lived in the area.
He said they would now work to develop a habitat for the Queen Alexandra Butterfly by planting the vines that it feeds on to attract them and further conclusions can be ascertained.
Nukara was surprised the vines species found in Managalas where the world’s largest butterfly feeds from was also found at Inaina.
There is concern however that over population which had increased to over 1000 from 300 and logging development in the area pose threats to destruction of their habitats.