False Dewy Ringlet
Erebia sthennyo

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Erebia sthennyo

Val d'Aran, Pyrenees, July 2008

Erebia sthennyo

Val d'Aran, Pyrenees, July 2007

Erebia sthennyo

Val d'Aran, Pyrenees, July 2008

Erebia sthennyo

Val d'Aran, Pyrenees, July 2008

Erebia sthennyo

Val d'Aran, Pyrenees, July 2007

Erebia sthennyo

Val d'Aran, Pyrenees, July 2007

Val d'Aran, July 2005

Val d'Aran, July 2005

Val d'Aran, July 2005

Erebia sthennyo distribution

Distribution

There is ongoing disagreement about whether this is a good species or merely a subspecies of the dewy ringlet. Their distributions overlap in a part of the eastern Pyrenees but they are said not to fly at the same sites. I found a site high in the Val d'Aran back in 2005 and was able to return in 2007 and 2008, but on my next return to the area in 2011 the weather was so poor there was no point in climbing to 2300m. The species behaves very much like the dewy ringlet and with my then camera I was not able to approach close enough for good photos. I will, of course, go back again when the opportunity arises. The site itself was similar to dewy ringlet sites but generally grassier and more open.

The main point of distinction between this and the dewy ringlet is the upperside forewing, which in the male has less red and lacks the well defined dark transverse lines of that species. The dark spots are also slightly closer to the margin. The female also lacks the transverse lines but has extensive red. The underside is said to be less well marked and I found that true in most cases, though some false dewy ringlets had a strong coffee stain across the middle of the wing.

I believe the life cycle of the false dewy ringlet is similar to that of the dewy ringlet - so presumably the caterpillar hibernates twice.