15 February 2022

Yellow Splendour – Dhahran Al Janub

Whilst birding a roadside wadi near Haddadah, close to Dhahran Al Janub near the Yemen border I saw a number of Yellow Splendour Colotis protomedia butterflies. This is a large species, with a beautiful primrose yellow upper-side, bordered with black. The veins on the forewings are also black, as it the sub apical bar. They occur from northeastern Nigeria and Cameroon, east to Sudan (and even the extreme north of Egypt), Somalia, Saudi Arabia (southwest), Yemen, and south to the drier parts of East Africa (northern Uganda, northern and eastern Kenya, and northern Tanzania) covering in excess of 20,000 km2. The species is found mainly in dry savannah habitats. Individuals of this species are attracted to flowers, especially those of the larval host-plants, which comprise Maerua species and adults have a fast flight. The intricate underside of this large yellow butterfly make it one of the most beautiful of all species found in Saudi Arabia.