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Marsh Fritillary

Euphydryas aurinia

  • Family: Brushfooted Butterflies – Nymphalidae
  • Subfamily: True Brushfoots – Nymphalinae
  • Wing span: Medium-sized, 32–46 mm (1.25–1.79 in.). Females usually larger than males.
  • Wing upper side: Orange and yellow blotches surrounded by brownish black strips, stripes and veins. Orange strip with row of black spots near margin of hind wing. Row of black-edged yellow blotches immediately outside strip.
  • Wing underside: Forewing pale orange, yellow-blotched. Hind wing pale orange, basal part with yellowish white black-edged blotches, middle with black-edged yellowish white lateral strip, and outermost part a yellowish white strip composed of arcs. Row of black blotches between the two previously-mentioned strips.
  • Habitat: Forest meadows, abundantly-flowered damp meadows and bogs.
  • Flying time: June.
  • Overwintering form: Caterpillar.
  • Larval foodplant: Devil’s-bit scabious (Succisa pratensis) and ribwort plantain (Plantago lanceolata).
  • Endangerment: Endangered, protected in all of Finland.

The marsh fritillary has declined. It can be found rarely in south-eastern Finland.

Upper side of the marsh fritillary’s wing is orangey yellow and the hind wing margin has a row of black spots, so it can be differentiated from its close relatives. Males defend their territory in bushes and forest margins as they wait for females, which lay their eggs in bunches on the underside of the host plant’s leaves. The caterpillars live on the host plant in colonies in a cobweb nest, where they also overwinter.

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

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