A preliminary survey on lepidopteran caterpillar diversity in Karnatak University, Dharwad
Soumya Channi, Sudha Kalliganur, Summet Jakabal, Swapna Revadi, Dheeraj K Veeranagoudar and Pulikeshi M Biradar
Among insects, lepidopterans (butterflies and moths) are most successful group of animals found in nature. The vast majority of Lepidopterans are found in the tropics, but substantial diversity exists in most of the continents. In nature several varieties of caterpillars and their corresponding butterflies and moths can be seen. There is a need to study the community structure of this dynamic group of lepidopterans with respect to different regions of our country. Hence, the present survey work was undertaken to study the diversity of caterpillars from Karnatak University (KU) Campus, Dharwad by dividing the whole campus into five survey sites. During the present survey, a total of 52 species of caterpillars were collected, out of which 25 species belonging to 11 families have been identified. Among these 11 families, more number of species (04) were observed under the Lymantriidae, Nymphalidae, Sphingidae families followed by Arctidae with three species and Erebidae, Noctuidae, Papilionidae with two species each and least number of species were observed under the families Crimbidae, Plutellidae, Geometridae and Hesperiidae with one species each. The diversified flora of the campus provides suitable atmospheric conditions and protection to the caterpillers.