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Erebia aethiopella

False Mnestra Ringlet

Field Notes

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Hautes Alpes, France, July 2009

 

Hautes Alpes, France, July 2004

Male - distinctive sex brand on the forewing.

 

Hautes Alpes, France, July 2004

Female uns

 

Hautes Alpes, France, July 2004

Male uns

 

Hautes Alpes, France, July 2004

 

Hautes Alpes, France, July 2003

Male - distinctive sex brand on the forewing.

 

Hautes Alpes, France, July 2003

Same male as above

 

Hautes Alpes, France, July 2003

Male

 

Hautes Alpes, France, July 2003

Resting in the early afternoon heat.

 


This species has a limited distribution in the Alps of SE France and just over the border into NW Italy. It is very local. I've found 2 colonies and at one of these they were common. It was so hot though that the butterflies weren't settling long. Combined with steep grassy slopes, photography was very difficult. At about midday all butterflies reduced their flight, hiding in the low undergrowth.

Keys to identification of this Erebia include the striped sex brand on the male and the fairly uniform underside hindwing with a broad pale post discal band (visible on both underside photographs above).

 

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