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Cupido argiades. (24)
|Cupido argiades (Pallas, 1771)|
Azuré du Trèfle, …
Wing span: 25 – 35 mm
One of the smallest Blues of Europe, C. argiades may be found in the central and southern parts of the Eurasion continent from Northern Spain all over to Japan.
The caterpillar’s feeding plants are Fabaceae such as Lotus corniculatus, Medicago, Lathyrus. In the region of Vienna, butterflies would emerge in three to four generations per year. The species inhabits dry and warm locations at low elevations where it may be seen flying rapidly close to the ground from spring into late summer - sometimes in good numbers when the weather is hot. In some parts of Europe with intense agriculture that little butterfly is considered to be a threatened species. In the region of Vienna it is one of the most common blues.
There is also another closely related southeastern European species to be found in our region: Cupido decoloratus. That one is quite similar, but orange spots on the undersides of hindwings are missing. C. decoloratus seems to be less common here.
Here Cupido argiades is seen drinking nectar from blossoms of Lathyrus latifolius, the Perennial Pea, on Moedlinger Eichkogel, an exposed hill with protected undisturbed dry grassland vegetation to the south of Vienna. Lathyrus might also serve as the caterpillars‘ feeding plant there.
An extended period of unusually hot and dry weather recently did not appear to have affected the flowering plants in our region’s xerothermic habitats. The dry heath is full with blossoms, and there are butterflies in good numbers, apparently well adapted to the heat. Some kind of unexpected paradise, one might say.
Head down, from some distance.
- Gudrun und Dietmar Foelsche: Naturparadies Eichkogel. Hotspot der Artenvielfalt. Wien 2011.
- H. Höttinger, M. Pendl, M. Wiemers, A. Pospisil: Insekten in Wien – Tagfalter. Wien 2013.
- Christian Stettmer, Markus Bräu, Patrick Gros, Otmar Wanninger: Die Tagfalter Bayerns und Österreichs, Laufen/Salzach 2007
- Christopher Jonko: Butterflies and Moths of Europe. http://www.lepidoptera.pl/
FUJIFILM FinePix HS20 EXR, 4608 x 3456 pixels, sRGB, 32mm macro zoom (equivalent 192 mm at full size SLR), F/6.4, 1/600sec., bias: -0.3, ISO-200, hand held, no flash. 07.08.2013, 10:35.
Adobe Photoshop CS4, image closely cropped to the limit of resolution, resized to web, selectively resharpened, levels slighty adjusted.
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|Altered Image #1|
cupido, head down.
|Cupido argiades in dry heath low vegetation, sucking nectar from Lathyrus latifolius. |
The camera: FUJIFILM FinePix HS20 EXR, 4608 x 3456 pixels, sRGB, 18mm macro zoom (equivalent 108 mm at full size SLR), F/6.4, 1/500sec., bias: -0.3, ISO-200, hand held, no flash. 07.08.2013, 10:35. Postwork: Adobe Photoshop CS4, slightly cropped, resized to web, selectively resharpened, levels slighty adjusted.
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