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Ringlet

Aphantopus hyperantus

  • Family: Brushfooted Butterflies – Nymphalidae
  • Subfamily: Browns – Satyrinae
  • Wing span: Small–medium-sized, 30–42 mm (1.17–1-64 in.). Females usually larger than males.
  • Wing upper side: Dark brown. Edge of wing possibly with row of black eyespots with white centre and surrounded by yellow ring. Eyespots usually clearer on females than males.
  • Wing underside: Brown, edge with row of eyespots (same colours as upper side).
  • Habitat: Damp meadows and grazing land in forested areas.
  • Flying time: July.
  • Overwintering form: Caterpillar.
  • Larval foodplant: Different grasses (Poaceae), e.g. Timothy-grass (Phleum pratense).

The Brushfooted Butterfly family is linked by the blotch patterns on its members’ wings. Blotches and especially blotchy patches are of course common to other butterflies too, and many Finnish butterflies have some kind of patches. Brushfooted Butterflies’ blotches are regularly round, however, often with eyespots, which are dark blotches with a light centre or vice versa. The blotches are therefore very easy to see.

The ringlet is the only representative of its genus that belongs to the large Brushfooted Butterflies family’s subfamily, the Browns. It is often one of the most abundant butterflies in its habitats. In southern and central Finland it can be confused with the woodland brown, which also has large eyespots. The ringlet’s eyespots are much smaller, however; they are rarer and a number of blotches on the underside always have a white centre. Females lay their eggs directly on the ground.

Other species from the same subfamily

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