Habitat selection and oviposition of the endangered butterfly Scolitantides orion in Sweden.
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 40 credits / 60 HE creditsStudent thesis
Detailed knowledge about the habitat requirements of butterflies is vital for successful conservation. The aim of the present study was to examine the habitat requirements of the endangered butterfly Scolitantides orion on 15 sites in Östergötland, Sweden. The requirements of adults and ovipositing females were studied with regard to several environmental variables measured at three scales; small, transect and large scale. The probability of finding adults increased with decreasing tree cover at the small scale, and adult numbers increased with the proportion of bare rock at the large scale. In contrast, ovipositing females mainly responded to the small scale. The main finding was that females oviposited in areas with higher tree cover (< 70 %) than that preferred by dwelling adults (< 20 %). However, there was a greater probability of finding eggs when tree cover was less than 50 %. Furthermore, egg numbers on host plants increased with the number of leaves on the stem and with the proportion of surrounding bare rock or bare ground. At the transect scale, females oviposited in areas with a higher density of host plants. To conclude, S. orion predominately inhabits open areas with warm microclimatic conditions for dwelling and oviposition. To conserve this species, suitable areas containing nectar plants and high densities of host plants with large leaf numbers and surrounded by large proportions of bare rock or bare ground, should be preserved. The areas should be maintained by selective clearing at regular intervals to uphold canopy openness and heterogeneity.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. , 36 p.
Butterfly, conservation, habitat preferences, habitat requirements, life stages, Lycaenidae, oviposition, Scolitantides orion
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-94649ISRN: LiTH-IFM-Ex--13/2768--SEOAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-94649DiVA: diva2:634102
Subject / course