Argynnis niobe (Linnaeus, 1758)


Argynnis niobe: Adult (Massif Central, Mont Lozčre, France, mid-July 2012) [N] Argynnis niobe: Male (Valais, August 2009) [N] Argynnis niobe: Male (Valais, August 2009) [N] Argynnis niobe: Male (N-Greece, Vitsi, late June 2013) [N] Argynnis niobe: Male (Northern Greece, Vitsi, late June 2013) [N] Argynnis niobe: Male (Valais, August 2008) [N] Argynnis niobe: Male (Valais, August 2008) [N] Argynnis niobe: Adult (Valais, Switzerland) [N] Argynnis niobe: Female [S] Argynnis niobe: Lower side [M] Argynnis niobe: Lower side [M] Argynnis niobe: Lower side [S] Argynnis niobe: Mating (N-Greece, Vitsi, late June 2013) [N] Argynnis niobe: Ovum [S] Argynnis niobe: Half-grown larva [S] Argynnis niobe: Half-grown larva [S] Argynnis niobe: Larva [S] Argynnis niobe: Larva [S] Argynnis niobe: Larva [S] Argynnis niobe: Larva [N] Argynnis niobe: Pupa lateral [S] Argynnis niobe: Pupa dorsal [S] Argynnis niobe: Pupa [S] Argynnis niobe: Habitat in W-Austrian Alps (Montafon): forest gap systems with limestone grasslands [N] Argynnis niobe: Habitat in the Montafon (W-Austrian Alps) [N] Argynnis niobe: Habitat at the Mont Lozčre (Massif Central, July 2012) [N]

Host plants:
The larvae feed on Viola species.

Habitat:
Argynnis niobe inhabits forest gap systems and forest clearings near bushy grasslands. Above the tree line, the butterfly is sometimes common in alpine meadows to well over 2200m above sea level.

Life cycle:
Hibernation takes place as a caterpillar in the egg shell. The larva hatches in March (later at high altitudes), and is mature in June. So I found larvae, for example, in the west Austrian Rätikon in forest gap systems with grasslands and the companions Boloria titania and Boloria thore. I observed there oviposition on small elevated, dry hills with sparse vegetation and lichens and only sparse occurrence of violets. The adults fly between late June and late August/early September and can be very common in the Alpine region (mainly of the Southern Alps).

Endangerment: strongly endangered

Endangerment factors:
In Germany Argynnis niobe is endangered because of eutrophication, darkening of forests and intensification of grasslands near forests. The butterfly is occuring only local in Central Europe, such as in the Alps, the Black Forest, the Jura region or in sandy pine woods about in Brandenburg.

Remarks:
Argynnis niobe can be determined relatively easy as imago by the hindwing lowerside as well as other characteristics. Nevertheless it is often confused with Argynnis adippe.

The distribution covers Europe, Asia Minor, the Middle East and other parts of Asia to the Amur.



Argynnis adippe | Argynnis aglaja | Argynnis elisa | Argynnis pandora | Argynnis paphia