“The Striped Albatross (Appias libythea olferna, family Pieridae, subfamily Pierinae) is a common butterfly species in Singapore and does occur in urban habitats (Khew, 2010). This species is sexually dimorphic, so the males and females adorn themselves with different ‘costumes’.
“On the afternoon of 16th August 2014, I was privileged to witness the private moment of a mating pair in a public park. The chivalrous male had gently enveloped the female’s wings with his, somewhat equivalent to hugging in humans. Their fused abdomens were not visible as they were concealed behind closed wings (above).
“As the butterflies were bound to each other, they seemed to be entranced by the spellbinding singing of the cicadas in the background. Slowly but surely, the cicada song ascended to its climax, celebrating the warm union between two butterflies that did not merely pass each other by.
“A video clip of this mating pair may be previewed here:”
Dr. Leong Tzi Ming
19th September 2014
Khew, S. K., 2010. A Field Guide to the Butterflies of Singapore. Ink on Paper Communications Pte Ltd, Singapore. xxv + 342 pp.