Melitaea diamina (Lang, 1789)


Melitaea diamina: Upper side (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany) [N] Melitaea diamina: Upper side (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany) [N] Melitaea diamina: Adult (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany, June 2012) [N] Melitaea diamina: Adult, together with Zygaena osterodensis (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany, June 2012) [N] Melitaea diamina: Adult (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany, June 2012) [N] Melitaea diamina: Adult (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany, June 2012) [N] Melitaea diamina: Female (S-Germany, Allgaeu Alps, Hinterstein, 1100m asl, July 2013) [N] Melitaea diamina: Male-upper side [S] Melitaea diamina: Adult [N] Melitaea diamina: Female-upper side [N] Melitaea diamina: Lower side [M] Melitaea diamina: Lower side (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany) [N] Melitaea diamina: Adult (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany, June 2012) [N] Melitaea diamina: Half-grown larva (eastern Swabian Alb, June 2013) [N] Melitaea diamina: Larva (eastern Swabian Alb, June 2013) [N] Melitaea diamina: Larva (eastern Swabian Alb, June 2013) [N] Melitaea diamina: Larva (eastern Swabian Alb, June 2013) [N] Melitaea diamina: Larva (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany, May 2009) [N] Melitaea diamina: Larva (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany, May 2009) [N] Melitaea diamina: Pupa [S] Melitaea diamina: Pupa [S] Melitaea diamina: Pupa (e.l. eastern Swabian Alb 2013) [S] Melitaea diamina: Pupa (e.l. eastern Swabian Alb 2013) [S] Melitaea diamina: Larvae in their habitat on a wet clearing of the eastern Swabian Alb (June 2013) Melitaea diamina: Larvae in their habitat on a wet clearing of the eastern Swabian Alb (June 2013) [N] Melitaea diamina: Habitat on a wet clearing of the eastern Swabian Alb (June 2013) [N] Melitaea diamina: Habitat: Wet meadow with Epipactis palustris and Valeriana (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany) [N] Melitaea diamina: Habitat in a humid forest with Coenonympha hero and C. arcania (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany) [N]

Host plants:
The larva feeds on Valeriana species. The caterpillar denied Plantago and Veronica in a breeding attempt.

Habitat:
Melitaea diamina colonizes wetlands, fens, bushy limestone grasslands, alpine snow heath pine forests, coppice forests, rocky slopes, mostly moist clearcuttings and other similar habitats. On the eastern Swabian Alb, Melitaea diamina often flies in damp forest fringes and clearings along with Zygaena osterodensis and Coenonympha hero and less abundant also in the nearby juniper limestone grasslands.

Life cycle:
Hibernated caterpillars are found from April to early/mid-June, adults between mid-June and early August. I observed caterpillars in April in Erica carnea-pinewoods on Valeriana tripteris (usually next to rocks), in juniper heaths on Valeriana wallrothii (even tiny stocks) and in moist coppice forests at Valeriana officinalis.

Endangerment: regionally endangered or decreasing

Endangerment factors:
Similar to Melitaea athalia. In many places Melitaea diamina is already a rarity. Melitaea diamina is still more common only direct at the Alps and in other areas with a high proportion of extensive grasslands, fens or wet clearings.

Remarks:
The distribution ranges from Northern Spain and Southern Scandinavia across Central Europe to East Asia (Japan).



Melitaea arduinna | Melitaea asteria | Melitaea athalia | Melitaea aurelia | Melitaea britomartis | Melitaea cinxia | Melitaea deione | Melitaea didyma | Melitaea parthenoides | Melitaea phoebe | Melitaea trivia | Melitaea varia