Holoarctia cervini (Fallou, 1864)

Holoarctia cervini: Male [S] Holoarctia cervini: Female [S] Holoarctia cervini: Weibchen [S] Holoarctia cervini: Mating [S] Holoarctia cervini: Ovae, freshly deposited [S] Holoarctia cervini: Emergence aus the ovum [S] Holoarctia cervini: L1 larvae [S] Holoarctia cervini: Young larva [S] Holoarctia cervini: Half-grown larva [S] Holoarctia cervini: Larva [N] Holoarctia cervini: Larva [N] Holoarctia cervini: Female pupa, only little pruinose (e.l. Valais) [S] Holoarctia cervini: Pupa [S] Holoarctia cervini: Habitat in the Valais in almost 3000 m above sea level in June at the time of the fully-grown larva [N] Holoarctia cervini: Habitat detail [N]

Host plants:
The species is polyphagous. I found a caterpillar feeding on Poa alpina and another on Saxifraga.

Holoarctia cervini inhabits sun exposed scree slopes of the high Alps from 2000 to 3200m above sea level (particularly 2800-3000m). The caterpillars can be observed feeding during the day especially in the spring.

Life cycle:
The caterpillar overwinters usually twice, sometimes probably even three times. In spring, pupation takes place quickly (under heat retaining stones) and the moth flies from July to mid-August. The eggs are also laid on the underside of flat stones.

Endangerment factors:
In some places, Holoarctia cervini might be endangered in spite of the height by tourist development, just think of the Zermatt region.

Holoarctia cervini is found in the high altidtudes of the central Alps (Austria, Switzerland, France, Italy) and is always extremely local and missing in wide areas. Populations are known, for example, from the Austrian Ötztal, the Swiss Grisons and Valais. Holoarctia cervini formed several sub-species, which differ in the colour and further details.