<< Previous Next >>

Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria)

Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria)
Photo Information
Copyright: Siegfried Potrykus (siggi) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2014-05-03
Categories: Insects
Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
Exposure: f/10.0, 1/125 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2015-09-28 5:32
Viewed: 1040
Points: 22
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
The Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria) is a butterfly found in and on the borders of woodland throughout much of Europe. In Northern and Eastern Europe where subspecies P. a. tircis occurs it is brown with pale yellow or cream spots and darker upperwing eyespots. In southwestern Europe the subspecies P. a. aegeria has a colour which is more orange in the background; the hindwing underside eyespots are reddish brown rather than black or dark gray. The two forms gradually intergrade into each other. The speckled wood also occurs in North Africa and on the Atlantic island of Madeira. Molecular studies (Weingarter, Wahlberg & Nylin, 2006) suggest that the African and Madeiran populations are closely related and distinct from European populations of both subspecies, suggesting that Madeira was colonized from Africa and that the African population has a long history of isolation from European populations.
Females have brighter and more distinct markings than males. The wingspan of both males and females is 4 - 4.5 cm, although males tend to be slightly smaller than females. Males are highly territorial and will defend their territory against intruding males. For finding females, there exist 2 basic strategies: Some males will vigorously defend a perch and the immediate surroundings, waiting for females to pass by. Others will patrol a larger territory.
Males have either 3 or 4 upper hindwing eyespots. The fourth spot shows only in flight. It appears that the 4-spotted morph tends towards patrolling behaviour to finds mates. This agrees with the probable function of the eyespots to entice predators like birds to aim for the wing margin (which may be damaged without much affecting the butterfly) father than the body. On the other hand, habitat is apparently a major factor influencing mate-finding strategy: perching behavior is more common in males of conifer woodland, whereas males of meadows tend towards patrolling behavior.
The caterpillar is green with a short, forked tail and feeds on various species of grass including Yorkshire Fog. The chrysalis (pupa) is green or dark brown. The species is unique in its ability to overwinter in two totally separated developmental stages, as pupae or as half-grown larvae. This leads to a complicated pattern of several adult flights per year.


Hotelcalifornia, ramthakur, jcoowanitwong, tuslaw, periko has marked this note useful
Only registered TrekNature members may rate photo notes.
Add Critique [Critiquing Guidelines] 
Only registered TrekNature members may write critiques.
You must be logged in to start a discussion.

Critiques [Translate]

Hello Siegfried,

Beautiful butterfly.... Quite well captured even in such scorching sunlight. Details are good as well as natural color.
Thanks for showing,

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2015-09-28 7:25]

Hello Sigi,
This photo is taken from a perfect POV, as usual. Excellent sharpness, details and nice colours in full sunshine.

A nice point of view to capture this Speckled Brown on a green leaf, Siegfried. The light is coming right from the top, but the details on the wing are well captured.

hallo Siegfried
super good picture with nice details and good light
i like this composition
thanks gr lou

Ciao Siggi, great macro of lovely butterfly, wonderful colors, splendid sharpness and fine details, very well done, my friend, ciao Silvio

Hello Siegfried,
This is a beautiful species. Sharp focus and the bright sunlight is well under control. TFS, JC

Beautiful picture Siegfried.

Thanks for sharing.

Hello Sigi

Great macro of Speckled wood butterfly, very nice composition, excellent sharpness and details.



  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2015-09-29 11:26]

Hello Siggi,
Great shot of this Speckled Wood Butterfly. Looks like it had gotten into a bout with a bird, as part of it's abdomen and lower right wing appears to be missing. Nicely focused and just the right exposure.

Hello Siggi
excellent POV and pose, great framing, the sharpness is superb as well as the colors
Have a good night

Hi Siegfried
This is a rare species, unknown to me.
Interesting pattern with those two spots like eyes.


  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2015-10-07 12:06]

Hi Siggi,good capture of this very old pararge,just the top is a bit blurred,but the rest is perfect,i like it! Have a nice evening and thanks,Luciano

Calibration Check