Dispersal ability and habitat selection in Melitaea telona kovacsi Varga, 1967 and M. phoebe (Denis & Schiffermüller, 1775) (Nymphalidae) in steppe grassland

János Pál Tóth, Judit Bereczki, Nigel Spring, Zoltán Varga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Melitaea tetona is a protected species in Hungary. The known range has shown significant contraction over the last decades. In order to conserve this species it is important to understand its dispersal ability and patterns of movement. The, mobility of M. telona and the related M. phoebe were studied using capture-recapture methods. 307 M. telona and 139 M phoebe individuals were marked and 12% recaptured during May 2009 in three study areas with ten sample sites. We estimated the densities of the larval food plant (Cirsium pannonicum) and of the most important nectar source (Dianthus pontederae). M. telona is moderately localized: the species is able to reach habitat patches several hundred metres distant. It tends to occur in high numbers where the food plant is abundant. In these sites, fewer M. phoebe were found, while there were higher numbers in the more degraded patches. Our data suggests that the density of the food plant is more important than the abundance of nectar sources in habitat selection by M. telona.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-207
Number of pages9
JournalNota Lepidopterologica
Volume33
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Insect Science

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