|scientific name Erebia magdalena |
common name Magdalena Alpine
Boulder fields near vegetation, at or above treeline (Hilchie, 1990).
Adults fly from July to early August (Bird et al., 1995).
This medium sized (wingspan of 45-51 mm) alpine is distinct from other alpines in Alberta, because the wing surfaces are dark brown to black and lack any white markings. Although most specimens are uniform in colour, some populations develop a rust coloured patch.
The eggs are ovoid with rounded ridges on the sides and rounded bumps on the top and bottom. They are cream coloured with the micropile centered at the apex.
First instar larvae are cream to light green and have a few fine hairs; second instar larvae are green, with a brown head capsule; third to fifth instar larvae have dark brown head capsules, and the body is green with black markings.
Pupae are short and ovoid, they have olive green to brown-coloured heads and their abdomen is medium brown with green; the cremaster is blunt and rounded (Hilchie, 1990).
Larvae overwinter and it may take them more than a year to reach maturity (Bird et al., 1995). Pupation occurs on the ground (Bird et al., 1995). To find females, males patrol along ridges and over rockslides and actively pursue potential mates (Hilchie, 1990). Eggs are laid shortly after mating, near rockslides, on grasses and sedges, and on the side of rocks near rushes, where they are glued to the substrate (Hilchie, 1990).
Very restricted range; provincial rank S1and status is "Secure" because habitat is protected.
Unknown for Alberta and elsewhere. Larvae have been reared on Kentucky Bluegrass (Poa pratensis), fescue (Festuca sp.), and Barley (Hordeum vulgare) in the lab (Hilchie, 1990). Larvae probably feed on grasses, sedges, and/or rushes (Hilchie, 1990). Adults feed on flower nectar (Opler et al., 1995).
In Canada, this species can be found in Alberta and the adjacent Rocky Mountains of British Columbia (Layberry et al., 1998). However, in Alberta, it has been collected from only two sites in the Willmore Wilderness Area. In the United States, it is found in the high mountains of Colorado, western Wyoming, and northeastern Utah (Opler et al., 1995).
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