Lasiommata megera, Crete - photo © K. Bormpoudaki
Lasiommata megera is a butterfly of the family Nymphalidae on the island of Crete, Greece.
Lasiommata megera (Linnaeus, 1767)
Family: Nymphalidae > Subfamily: Satyrinae > Tribus: Satyrini > Genus: Lasiommata
Male to female: 40-50 mm
The upper side of the wings is orange-yellow colored and the brown stripes crossing the disc form a characteristic pattern. There is a large black eye-mark on the forewing and several other smaller eye-marks in the postdiscal area of the hindwing, forming a regular row.
The underside of the wings is light brown with marks; the underside of the forewing is orange-yellow colored with a brown margin and has a black-white pupiled spot. The hindwing is grey-brown with a series of clear brown lines, and several yellow spots in the submarginal area with a brown border and a black central spot, also white pupiled.
Both sexes have the same appearance, but the female is larger and lacks androconia.
In hot conditions, they close their wings immediately on landing, with the forewings raised so that the apical ocellus is visible.
In lightly overcast weather, or during cooler conditions cool early or late in the day, males bask with wings outspread, exposing the maximum wing area to the sun. Another tactic they often use is to raise the wings to a 45° angle, which traps pockets of warm air above the thorax and abdomen.
Lasiommata megera in Crete lives mainly in fields of medium-altitude, and secondarily on mountains. Rocky slopes, shrubland, hot grassy places, often with bare ground or rocks are favorite places to bask.
The larva lives on Poaceae plants.
The butterfly flies in 2-3 generations per year.
The Wall Brown has a unique appearance in Crete and can’t be confused with any other butterflies of the island.
Least Concern (LC)
Lasiommata Megera Distribution Map
*based on http://www.pamperis.gr/THE_BUTTERFLIES_OF_GREECE/MAPS.html