Satyrium spini

Blue Spot Hairstreak


by Matt Rowlings

copyright © 2003-2024

Show butterflies of: EU US
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Valais, Switzerland, June 2022

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Piedmont, Italy, July 2010

Field notes and information

The large blue spot and bright white line make this a distinctive species which in some areas is easily found, in others it is very discrete.

Identification & Similar species: The large blue spot and bold white line on the underside hindwing are distinctive. Other species may have a small blue spot which may lead to brief confustion, for example the sloe hairstreak, S. acaciaewhich i, otherwise quite different.

Distribution & Flight: Southern and central Europe, absent from the UK, Scandinavia and north Africa. From low levels to 2000m or more. Abundance is variable from region to region, in my experience it is often more common in hills and high levels, although for example in western Switzerland it is rather rare. It flies in June and July.

Habitat & Behaviour: Open shrubby places and at higher levels dwarf shrubs. It takes nectar at flowers where it can be photographed at liesure. It also reste for long periods on the foliage of shrubs.

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Montes Universales, Spain, July 2011

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Valais, Switzerland, June 2011

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SE Serbia, June 2012

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Karwanken Alps, Slovenia, July 2014

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Valais, Switzerland, June 2011

S. spini with S. ilicis on the right.

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Var, France, May 2012

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Peloppensos, Greece, June 2013

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Prov. Malaga, Spain, July 2013

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Monte Baldo, Italy, July 2014

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Triglav, Slovenia, August 2014

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NW Greece, July 2016

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S Greece, July 2018

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Almeria, Spain, July 2013