Mellicta varia

Grison's Fritillary

euroButterflies

by Matt Rowlings

copyright © 2003-2016

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Photo: varia

Valais, Switzerland, July 2007

Male.

Photo: varia

Valais, Switzerland, July 2007

Female.

Field notes and information

A small species found at higher altitudes (mainly at alpine levels, occasionally lower) in the Alps and central Italy. It's local but often common where found.

Identification & Similar species: Separation from some similar species can be very difficult and even impossible for many individuals. However study of genetalia on living male butterflies is possible and gives definitive results. See the

Heath fritillary, M. athaliafor features that may help separate this and other similar species.

Distribution & Flight: Only from the Alps and Appenines. Single brooded in the summer from late June to early August.

Habitat & Behaviour: Grassy flowery slopes, usually at or above the tree line. Frequently takes nectar and salts at damp patches and mountain streams.

Photo: varia

Valais, Switzerland, June 2012

Photo: varia

Grisons, Switzerland, July 2013

Photo: varia

Hautes Alpes, France, July 2012

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Valais, Switzerland, July 2012

Photo: variaPhoto: varia

Hautes Alpes, France, July 2012

Photo: variaPhoto: varia

Valais, Switzerland, July 2007

Photo: varia

Identification of the difficult Mellicta group by genitalia. Click on link to review the Mellicta