Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Pins and Needles 10: Lepidoptera of Saigon

Okay so now that the soppy sad story is out of the way, I've finally had time to open my bags, unpack, and sort out all the souvenirs I brought back from this trip. Of course, while my friends are probably unpacking various sorts of lacquer-ware and key-chains, it is only fitting for someone like me to unpack souvenirs of the more exotic variety or sort. My lepidoptera specimens. While the main city of Ho Chi Minh proved tough pickings for any species of lepidoptera (as one might expect of any city around the world) the same cannot be said of the countrysides we visited during our journey there, namely the Mekong Delta and the fruit orchards surrounding the Chu Chi tunnels where countless yellow-day flying moths and papilio butterflies were spotted. Unfortunately for me, I had not brought along a butterfly net on this trip (something I will not be overlooking again when I travel to Sabah tomorrow) but despite it all I still managed to bag myself some specimens.

From the wild to the bag.
Of course this was just one of the many butterflies I spotted that day and I must say I impressed myself as well somewhat with my ability to distinguish and identify almost all of them now by both their common and scientific names!!! Talk about self-improvement. Of course I also paid visits to the local markets where many butterfly specimens were on sale as well for extremely cheap/reasonable prices. However, because I packed extremely light I only managed to make it back with three atlas moth (attacus atlas) specimens... all for the low-low price of $6 USD or eighteen ringgit!!! Tell me where I can find such prices here in Malaysia.

And that's a couple more beauties to add to my personal collection. Tomorrow I'll be flying off to Sabah... and if everything goes smoothly and my butterfly net goes through... I suppose I'll be coming back with a lot more!!! At any rate though, I ain't too bothered even if I don't, because the best part of it all is I'll be spending five full days on holiday with my darling Rayray!!! Till I next see you...


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