Grammia quenseli (Paykull, 1793)

Grammia quenseli: Male (e.l. Grisons) [S] Grammia quenseli: Male (e.l. Grisons) [S] Grammia quenseli: Male (e.l. Grisons) [S] Grammia quenseli: Female (e.l. Grisons, Switzerland) [S] Grammia quenseli: Female (e.l. Grisons) [S] Grammia quenseli: Female lateral [S] Grammia quenseli: Ovum [S] Grammia quenseli: Half-grown larva [M] Grammia quenseli: Larva in penultimate instar [M] Grammia quenseli: Larva [M] Grammia quenseli: Larva [M] Grammia quenseli: Larva, dark [M] Grammia quenseli: Larva lateral [M] Grammia quenseli: Larva [M] Grammia quenseli: Pupa lateral [S] Grammia quenseli: Pupa ventral [S] Grammia quenseli: Habitat in 2500 m above sea level in October [N] Grammia quenseli: Habitat in the summer [N]

Host plants:
The larvae are polyphagous.

Grammia quenseli inhabits alpine, low-growing, rather dry meadows and pastures above the tree line between 2000 and 2900m above sea level, especially in the central Alps of Switzerland, but also in the Alps in Austria, Italy and France. Grammia quenseli is usually very local and rare.

Life cycle:
The life cycle is biennial. The caterpillar overwinters once small and then fully-grown at the second time. I found such overwintering, mature caterpillars in mid-October 2006 in the southern Engadine at 2500m above sea level together with pupae of Pontia callidice, larvae of Erebia pandrose, Setina aurita, Parasemia plantaginis, Phragmatobia fuliginosa, Zygaena exulans and Hypodryas cynthia under the sparse stones in small cavities loosely curled. In early July 2007, I observed especially half-grown caterpillars there. At the same time, one would have been able to observe eggs and butterflies.

Endangerment factors:
In places, Grammia quenseli can be endangered through tourism-related landscape destruction.

Also this species is determined in the periodic fluctuations by parasites and fungi.

Grammia quenseli shows the Holarctic distribution pattern: Alps and circumpolar (e.g. Northern Scandinavia).