Many European butterfly species have declined during the last decades due to habitat loss and fragmentation. To conserve a certain butterfly species, knowledge about its habitat requirements at different life stages is needed. Adults and immature stages require specific conditions which may be completely or partly separated in space. The habitat requirements of immature stages are often more specific than those of adults, and usually determine population size and distribution.
One butterfly species that has decreased in distribution and abundance in many European countries mainly due to fragmentation is Scolitantides orion. In Sweden, S. orion is currently classified as endangered on the Red list of Swedish species due to rapid population declines in the last three decades. The estimated population size was 1000 individuals in 2011. The largest populations are found in Bråviken in Östergötland County and Marvikarna in Södermanland County, southern Sweden. In these regions, the species inhabits sun exposed rock outcrops and slopes with sparse vegetation.
The aim of the study was to examine the habitat requirements of adult and ovipositing S. orion butterflies. Today, there are no detailed studies on the habitat requirements of this species and such information may be vital for conservation efforts.
Responsible for this page: Agneta Johansson
Last updated: 05/23/13