Maniola jurtina

Meadow Brown

euroButterflies

by Matt Rowlings

copyright © 2003-2016

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Photo: jurtina

Chalkidiki, Greece, May 2004

Male showing scent brands on forewings.

Photo: jurtina

Ain, France, August 2009

Female.

Field notes and information

Arguably the commonest European butterfly. It flies everywhere from north Africa into southern Scandinavia. It is often abundant throughout the range and can be found in dry or damp conditions upto moderate altitudes (1500m or so) and in any variety of grassy habitat.

Identification & Similar species: Several very similar species are found on various Greek islands close to the Turkish mainland where the current species doesn't fly. I haven't seen most of those species so I list them here.

From Lesbos, M. megala is larger.

From Chios and Inousses M. chia is the only species to fly.

From many of the more southerly islands, including Lesbos and Samos, M. telmessia can fly with several other similar species. Smaller than M. megala with which it may occur on Lesbos.

From the small island of Nissiros M. halicarnassus can be found where I don't think other similar species fly.

The Sardinian meadow brown M. nurag flies on Sardinia. That species is smaller and has a lot more orange on the upperside. The underside hindwing is relatively uniform light brown.

Also very similar to the Hyponephele species, which lack a well defined post discal band on the underside hindwing and whose females generally have two large upperside forewing post discal spots.

Distribution & Flight: In the region, only absent from central and northern Scandinavia. Single brooded, from late May to September.

Habitat & Behaviour: Grassy places in many situations - grasslands, forest clearings, hills, waste ground, islands...

Variation: Extremely variable in size and markings. In Spain, north Africa and south France the subspecies hispulla flies. This is somewhat brighter orange and has orange markings in the underside hindwing post discal band.

Photo: jurtina

Valais, Switzerland, July 2011

Male.

Photo: jurtinaPhoto: jurtina

Crete, Greece, April 2014

Photo: jurtina

Burgos, Spain, July 2011

Female.

Photo: jurtina

Vaud, Swizterland, June 2015

Photo: jurtinaPhoto: jurtina

Cadiz, Spain, October 2014

Photo: jurtina

Genève, Switzerland, May 2011

Photo: jurtina

Valais, Switzerland, July 2011

Photo: jurtina

SE Serbia, June 2012

Photo: jurtina

Piedmont, Italy, July 2012

Photo: jurtina

Peloppensos, Greece, June 2013

Photo: jurtina

Cadiz, Spain, October 2014

Photo: jurtina

Var, France, May 2012

Photo: jurtina

Berne, Switzerland, August 2012

Photo: jurtina

Crete, June 2004

Photo: jurtina

Hampshire, UK, September 2004

A heavily mottled individual.

Photo: jurtina

Genève, Switzerland, June 2014

Photo: jurtina

Valais, Switzerland, July 2006

Photo: jurtinaPhoto: jurtinaPhoto: jurtina

Var, France, August 2010

Photo: jurtina

Susa Valley, Italy, July 2009

Photo: jurtina

Isère, France, May 2007

Photo: jurtina

Geneva, Switzerland, June 2007