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Lapland Ringlet

Erebia embla

  • Family: Brushfooted Butterflies – Nymphalidae
  • Subfamily: Browns – Satyrinae
  • Wing span: Medium-sized, 41–55 mm (1.6–2.15 in.).
  • Wing upper side: Dark brown. Both forewing and hind wing with row of black blotches, foremost usually with central white spot (eyespot), all surrounded by yellow rings.
  • Wing underside: Dark brown. Forewing with row of black eyespots with yellow margin and central white spot. Two foremost blotches fused at apex of wing. Leading edge of hind wing with two white patches slightly outside centre. Especially females with row of small dark spots on edge of hind wing.
  • Habitat: Pine bogs.
  • Flying time: Southern Finland mid-June, Northern Finland late June–early July.
  • Overwintering form: Caterpillar (overwinters two seasons).
  • Larval foodplant: Different sedges (Carex).
  • Endangerment: Near threatened.

Like all ringlets, the Lapland ringlet has eyespots surrounded by a red or reddish yellow area. It flies around bogs, which is unusual among its close relatives with the exception of the Arctic ringlet. The Lapland ringlet can be differentiated from the Arctic ringlet and other ringlets (except the Arran brown) by the white blotches on the underside of the wing. The Arran brown can be differentiated from the Lapland ringlet by the fact that it is lacking continuous red strips on the upper side of its wings.

The Lapland ringlet can be found – though not very commonly – in most of Finland (excluding the Åland Islands and Finland’s north-western “arm”). The species has disappeared from large areas of southern Finland since the 1980s. The Lapland ringlet varies in abundance in a biennial cycle (like the Arran brown) because of the way that it overwinters twice. In southern Finland it is more common in oddly-numbered years. Females lay their eggs e.g. among moss close to the foodplant.

Other species from the same genus
Other species from the same group

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