Titania's Fritillary

Boloria (Clossiana) titania


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Boloria titania

Male, Switzerland, July 2019

Boloria titania

Male, Switzerland, July 2013

Boloria titania

Male, Switzerland, July 2017

Boloria titania

Male, Switzerland, July 2006

Boloria titania

Male, Switzerland, July 2019

Boloria titania

Female, Switzerland, July 2017

Boloria titania

Female, Switzerland, July 2014

Boloria titania

Supping at a martagon lily, Switzerland, July 2015

Male, Switzerland, July 2005

Boloria titania

Female, July 2011

Boloria titania

Female, July 2011

Switzerland, July 2005

Switzerland, July 2006

Switzerland, July 2006

Switzerland, July 2006

Boloria titania

Switzerland, July 2009

Boloria titania pupa

Pupa, Switzerland,, July 2011

Boloria titania distribution

Distribution

The largest and boldest of the Boloria fritillaries, this species is locally common in the Alps, the Balkans and the Baltic countries. Near my haunts in Vaud, in Switzerland (where subspecies cypris flies), it is common from June onwards, mostly above about 1000m, in a single generation. It flies lower that this in central France (subspecies titania).

The upperside is strongly marked and not infrequently a little melanic. The submarginal and postdiscal spots on the hindwings resemble a row of chess pawns, with the round postdiscal spots, representing the heads of the pawns, rather close to the fat, triangular bodies. The undersides are still more characteristic, the hindwings being marked in rich shades of red, yellow and white, set off by hints of violet. Altogether, this is an unmistakable butterfly, its large size and confident flight making it recognisable even from a distance.

Eggs are laid on bistort. The caterpillar develops inside but doesn't hatch until the following spring - hence its later emergence than many other Boloria species.