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Lycaena candens (Herrich-Schäffer, [1844])   


Systematics: Bulgarian material was until very recently treated as belonging to the Eurasian Lycaena hippothoe (Linnaeus, 1761). The latter reaches the N Balkan Peninsula and Romania but has not been reliably recorded from Bulgaria. The two species are externally very similar but differ in their male genitalia.

Range: From the Balkan Peninsula and Turkey to Iran and Caucasus.

Distribution in Bulgaria: Widespread in the higher mountains between 800 and 2200 m. Only a few lowland localities are known along the Black Sea coast and near Razgrad.

Habitat: Humid flowery meadows, glades, clearings etc. typically in the upper deciduous (beech) and coniferous forest zone.

Bionomics: One generation flying from June till late August. Larval host-plants: various Rumex (Polygonaceae) (Tolman & Lewington 1997).

Conservation status: A widespread and common species of Bulgarian high mountains which is however of conservation interest due to its limited total range. The status of the few unique coastal populations however raises immediate concern. IUCN category: Lower risk, near threatened/Vulnerable (coastal populations).



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