Papilio helenus Linnaeus, 1758 - Red Helen

Subspecies in India

(1) Papilio helenus helenus Linnaeus, 1758 – Oriental Red Helen

Another subspecies was listed under this species, as Papilio helenus daksha Hampson, [1889] – Sahyadri Red Helen. That is now raised as a distinct species, Papilio daksha Hampson, [1889] - Large-spotted Helen. See further information here and on the species page of Papilio daksha - Large-spotted Helen.

In India, Papilio helenus is now restricted to the E. Himalaya and NE India, it does not occur in the Western Ghats and neighbouring areas.

Images of Papilio daksha are still available on this website under this species page but they will eventually move to their own species page as the website is updated.

 

Key references:

Joshi, J., and K. Kunte. 2022. Polytypy and systematics: diversification of Papilio swallowtail butterflies in the biogeographically complex Indo-Australian Region. bioRxiv, 2022.03.23.485569.

Condamine, F. L., R. Allio, E. L. Reboud, J. R. Dupuis, E. F. A. Toussaint, N. Mazet, S.-J. Hue, D. S. Lewis, K. Kunte, A. M. Cotton, F. A. H. Sperling. 2023. A comprehensive phylogeny and revised taxonomy illuminate the origin and diversification of the global radiation of Papilio (Lepidoptera: Papilionidae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 107758.

Conservation and Special status

This species is not legally protected in India under any schedules of WildLife (Protection) Act, 1972.

Photo Gallery and Species Biology

StateJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecNo date
Andaman and Nicobar Islands UT
Andhra Pradesh3
Arunachal Pradesh312112631
Assam6222612
Bihar
Chandigarh
Chhattisgarh
Dadra & Nagar Haveli UT
Daman & Diu UT
Delhi
Goa
Gujarat
Haryana
Himachal Pradesh
Jammu and Kashmir UT
Jharkhand
Karnataka11141261
Kerala113181133
Ladakh UT
Lakshadweep
Madhya Pradesh
Maharashtra1311336231214
Manipur1
Meghalaya1722
Mizoram1
Nagaland4
Odisha
Puducherry UT
Punjab
Rajasthan
Sikkim13211
Tamil Nadu11
Tripura5411
Uttar Pradesh
Uttarakhand
West Bengal1
Total8102113115743473499

Citrus spp., Citrus limon, Clausena heptaphylla, Glycosmis pentaphylla, Toddalia asiatica, Zanthoxylum acanthopodium, Zanthoxylum rhetsa (Rutaceae).

Key Reference:
Nitin, R., V. C. Balakrishnan, P. V. Churi, S. Kalesh, S. Prakash, and K. Kunte. 2018. Larval host plants of the butterflies of the Western Ghats, India. Journal of Threatened Taxa, 10(4): 11495–11550.

For the complete list of larval host plants of Indian butterflies, see the page on larval host plants.

Page citation

Anonymous 2024. Papilio helenus Linnaeus, 1758 – Red Helen. In Kunte, K., S. Sondhi, and P. Roy (Chief Editors). Butterflies of India, v. 4.12. Published by the Indian Foundation for Butterflies. URL: https://www.ifoundbutterflies.org/papilio-helenus, accessed 2024/06/18.