We had a quieter day today due to me feeling rather delicate, probably still suffering from the heat of yesterday and failing to drink enough water. So we took a short drive and stopped by the road to see if we could find any Calisto’s. Rayner was looking especially for a currently undescribed new species that he has seen in the area previously, but we failed to find it. We did see a Queen Danaus gilippus ovipositing on small non-flowering plants of Asclepias curassavica in the open. It was laying on the underside of the leaves and with some searching we also found a small larva hiding under a leaf of a plant that had come into flower.
A walk on the other side of the road led down to a stream bed with some standing water remaining that contained some mud-puddling butterflies. Amongst these were several ‘yellows’ including a new species for us in the form of Boisduval’s Yellow Eurema boisduvaliana. The cut-off appearance of the hindwing is distinctive and very different from the male Bush Sulphur Pyrisitia dina, Little Yellow Pyrisitia lisa, Sleepy Orange Abaeis nicippe and Barred Yellow Eurema daira that were gathering alongside.
We also saw another new skipper here Impostor Duskywing Gesta gesta, a female, and we watched it laying on small foodplants on the bare ground, while a Cuban Sicklewing Eantis papinianus put in an all too brief appearance.
Rural life here is hard - there are no comfy air-conditioned tractors - and this was brought home to us when a farmer brought his two ploughing oxen past and stopped briefly for a quiet break.
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Here we will post interesting news about what we and others have seen in Cuba.