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Erebia neleus (Freyer, 1833)   

 

Systematics: Belongs to the systematically challenging group of Erebia tyndarus, under which name it is known in older Bulgarian literature. Currently known as Erebia cassioides (Reiner & Hohenwarth, 1792), but this name actually denotes another species of the group. New molecular studies show, that this species should be divided into at least two distinct species.

Range: A European endemic, found in the Pyrenees, Massif Central, the Alps, the Romanian Carpathians and the highest mountains of the Balkan Peninsula southwards to NW Greece.

Distribution in Bulgaria: Rila, N Pirin and C Stara Planina, between 1800 and 2700 m a.s.l. The record from Osogovo needs confirmation.

Habitat: Stony, grassy upper subalpine and alpine slopes and ridge crests.

Bionomics: One generation flying from late July till September. Larval host-plants: grasses (Poaceae) (Tolman & Lewington 1997).

Conservation status: This is one of the most local Erebia in the Bulgarian fauna. It has a very restricted Bulgarian as well as total range and, despite not being directly threatened at present, must be considered vulnerable and of high conservation interest. IUCN category: Vulnerable. Its inclusion into the Red Data Book of Bulgaria is herewith recommended.

 

 

 


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