A new species of skipper found in Pulau Ubin

(Photo credit: NSS member Yong Yik Shih)

A female Hyarotis microsticta was discovered by Yong Yik Shih at Chek Jawa in Pulau Ubin on 21 Sep 2015. 

Yik Shih is a very active member of the NSS Butterfly & Insect Group and a long time birder with NSS Bird Group who is known to have an eye for details. She was out with Lim Kim Keang, another NSS veteran on a nature trip looking for birds, butterflies and dragonflies, when they chanced upon this 'brown job' skipper butterfly. It has been identified by Dr. Seow Tek Lin (a butterfly expert from Malaysia) using his identification keys as Hyarotis microsticta - a new record for Singapore. 

Hyarotis microsticta has NOT been recorded by early authors including Corbet & Pendlebury 1992 and Khew & Neo 1997. This individual recorded from Pulau Ubin may be a vagrant from Malaysia or a cryptic species that was confused with other similar looking species before. We await another encounter with H. microsticta to get better photographs and a specimen so we can confirm the identity of this butterfly as a new record for Singapore.   

The other  Hyarotis species currently found in Singapore is the Tree flitter (Hyarotis adrastus) usually found in forested habitats of Singapore.