Plebejus idas

Idas Blue


by Matt Rowlings

copyright © 2003-2024

Show butterflies of: EU US
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Valais, Switzerland, May 2012

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Valais, Switzerland, September 2010

Field notes and information

A widespread and common species, it is very similar to the silver studded blue, P. argus.

Identification & Similar species: See species page for silver studded blue, P. argus, for information on how to separate the current species from the idas and Reverdin's blues, P. idas & P. argyrognomon.

Distribution & Flight: Across most of Europe, except parts of Spain, south Italy and the UK. Not north Africa. It flies in a single brood, sometime double, generally between June and August.

Habitat & Behaviour: Diverse grassy flowery places upto alpine levels in open places grassy flowery places or scrub/ bushes.

Variation: The taxon Bellier's blue, P. bellieri , from Corsica is now usually promoted from a subspecies of P. idas to species.

The subspecies calliopis has relatively fine markings and is notable for using the bush sea buckthorn, Hippophae rhamnoides, as a larval food plant. This taxon is local in the Alps and may fly close to the nominate form which flies generally at higher altitudes here.

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Vaud, Switzerland, August 2010

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N Sweden, July 2022

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Valais, Switzerland, July 2020

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Valais, Switzerland, July 2021

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N Norway, July 2022

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Valais, Switzerland, July 2021

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Valais, Switzerland, July 2021

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N Norway, July 2022

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Valais, Switzerland, July 2019

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Sierra Nevada, Spain, July 2013

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Sierra Nevada, Spain, July 2013

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Hautes-Pyrénées, France, July 2018

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Valais, Switzerland, July 2019