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The Journey to Paradise Photos of great cultural and natural beauties of Papua New Guinea

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Old 22-09-2002, 05:32 PM
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Research workers at the IFTA have discovered many new species. Special area of research have included detailed studies of all native birdwing butterflies and a study of the plight and conversation strategies needed to save Queen Alexandra's birdwing, ornithoptera alexandrae, the largest known butterfly in the world, which is found only in Papua New Guinea's Oro Province.


The region of New Guinea is renowned for the beauty, size and variety of its insects and, in particular, its butterflies. Especially well-known among naturalists, entomologists and collectors are the magnificent birdwing butterflies which are only found in this region of the world.

Papua New Guinea is home to more than 700 different species of butterflies. This is more than two times the number of species found in the continent of Europe which is about six times larger than PNG. The reason for this diversity of butterflies and insects in general is the tropical climate and the mountainous topography.
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Old 22-09-2002, 05:33 PM
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The many mountains valleys and islands not only offer a variety of different habitats but also lead to the evolution of many new species which are peculiar to Papua New Guinea and are sometimes only found in a restricted area. One example are many of the Delias species which are only found on certain mountain peaks, another is the largest butterfly of the world, Queen Alexandra's birdwing (ornithoptera alexandrae) which is confined to the lowland rainforest of the Popondetta region in Oro Province.

Other spectacular examples of Papua New Guinea's insect fauna include the Hercules Moth (Coscinocera Hercules) which is the largest moth in the world, or one of the largest stick insects in the world, Eurycnema Goliath.

The caterpillars of butterflies feed on many specific foodplants, some of them poisonous to large animals like the milkweeds or the alkaloid-rich Aristolochia vines which represent the food plants of the birdwing caterpillars. Storage of these poisons provides these caterpillars with protection against predators and sometimes even makes the adult butterflies distasteful to birds. Many of these butterflies have bright aposematic colouration to warn potential predators of their bitter taste.

Palatable species sometimes copy these colourations to trick predators and gain some protection for themselves (like the blue day-flying moth Alcides agathyrus w which is though to copy the swallowtail Papilio laglaizei) whereas other species (like the leaf-like coloured Doleschallia) prefer a cryptic appearance to escape their enemies.

Although different species of butterflies have developed various strategies to escape their many predators and parasites or to adapt to changing conditions of their environment, their survival is easily threatened by destruction of their natural habitats, in particular the rainforests, through human activities. An example is the rare Queen Alexandra's birdwing which is endangered by logging operations and agricultural clearing of the rainforest. Fortunately this species is now the subject of a conservation programme which hopefully will ensure its survival.
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Old 14-12-2004, 04:40 AM
doumont doumont is offline
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I seek a butterfly farmers from PNG . I'm looking for Ornithoptera sp and other Papilionidae quality A1.

Doumont Raoul

adress e-mail:
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Old 23-10-2012, 07:28 PM
jotunblikk jotunblikk is offline
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Insect Farming & Trading Agency in Bulolo


I visited the IFTA in Bulolo in March 1990. Recently I tried to search them up, but it seems their web-link is down? I understand that IFTA moved location a few years ago. To where? Still in operation like before? Do they have a up and going web-site?

Here is a link to my YouTube video filmed on location at the Insect farm in Bulolo in 1990:


Best regards
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Old 26-10-2016, 10:39 PM
djoe0635 djoe0635 is offline
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During travel to different locations its quite much fun knowing what we can actually get to have and also for a level it would all be working for us.
On a very correct way understanding it can be taken care of.
People who mostly prefer 2 days tour from new york should take a look and see how amazing it is!
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