List of butterflies of Minorca
Minorca is a small island in the Mediterranean Sea belonging to Spain, with a population of approximately 88,000. It is located 39°47' to 40°00'N, 3°52' to 4°24'E. There is good data on the butterflies of Minorca although it is not easy to find as most field guides do not give data on the smaller mediterranean islands. A good source in English is http://turismenatural.obsam.cat/en/papallones/ which lists 26 species and gives data on flight period and abundance.
Butterflies can be seen in all months of the year but the best months are May to September, the only butterfly not to fly in this period is the Green hairstreak which usually flies from February to April but if the season is late it can be seen into May.
- Papilio machaon, Swallowtail.
- Colias crocea, Clouded yellow.
- Gonepteryx cleopatra, Cleopatra. Common
- Gonepteryx rhamni, Brimstone. Rare; very few good records. Brimstones on Menorca maybe scarce migrants from the Spanish mainland but in the field it is hard to tell apart from the very common Cleopatra so it is probably undereported.
- Leptidea sinapis, Wood white. Uncommon woodland species.
- Pieris brassicae, Large white.
- Pieris rapae, Small white.
- Pieris napi, Green-veined white.
- Pontia daplidice, Bath white.
- Coenonympha pamphilus, Small heath.
- Maniola jurtina, Meadow brown. Abundant
- Pararge aegeria, Speckled wood. Abundant. The Speckled wood found on Menorca is the aegeria sub-species which has an orange background colour.
- Lasiommata megera, Wall. Subspecies paramegera occurs as well as the nominate form.
- Lasiommata maera, Large Wall. Very rare probably extinct
- Hipparchia semele, Grayling. Very rare probably extinct
- Hipparchia statilinus, Tree grayling. Very rare probably extinct
- Pyronia cecilia, Southern gatekeeper. Common
- Danaus chrysippus, Plain Tiger.
The plain tiger is a migrant that is sometimes seen on Minorca.
- Vanessa atalanta, Red admiral.
- Vanessa cardui, Painted lady.
- Charaxes jasius, Two-tailed pasha. Uncommon woodland species.
- Polyommatus icarus, Common blue. Abundant, seen all over the island.
- Polyommatus bellargus, Adonis blue. Uncommon.
- Aricia cramera, Southern brown argus. Fairly common, may be confused with female common blue.
- Celastrina argiolus, Holly blue. Common
- Lampides boeticus, Long-tailed blue. Local
- Leptotes pirithous, Lang's short-tailed blue. Local
- Lycaena phlaeas, Small copper. Local.
- Callophrys rubi, Green hairstreak. Flies very early; February to April.
- Cacyreus marshalli, Geranium bronze. Can be seen all year round.
The Geranium bronze is not a native to Minorca. In 1990 was introduced, accidentally, to Majorca on imported Pelargonium from South Africa. The butterflies quickly spread to Minorca and other islands as well as to southern Spain and Italy. They are often seen in gardens on geranium plants.
- Cello, J., 1980. Els Rhopalocera de les Illes Balears. Treb. Soc. Cat. Lep., 3:51-60
- Cello, J., 1980. Els Rhopalocera de les Illes Balears. Cens provisional. Treb. Soc. Cat. Lep., 4:33-53
- Pons, G., 2000. Les papallones diurnes de les balears., 87pp. Edicions Documenta Balear, Palma de Mallorca.
- Carreras, J., Jubany, J., and Stefanescu, C. 2004 Noves cites de papallones diürnes per a Menorca i les Illes Balears (Lepidoptera: Rhopalocera)Butll. Soc. Cat. Lep., 93. http://www.obsam.cat/documents/articles/Noves-cites-papallones-diurnes-Menorca-Balears.pdf
- Tolman. T. & Lewington. R., 2008. Collins Butterfly Guide. Pub. Collins p320