Butterflies of Europe
False Heath Fritillary
Family - NYMPHALIDAE
Tribe - MELITAEINI
Melitaea comprises of about 70
small-medium sized butterflies - species which are only very
distantly related the the larger Fritillaries such as
Argyreus, which are members of the subfamily Heliconiinae.
are distributed widely across the Palaearctic region from Portugal
and Spain to Tibet, China and Japan. There are 8 European species,
of which 4 extend their range into north Africa. A single species
abyssinica is found in Ethiopia, but
the genus is not represented south of the Sahara. The remaining
species are all inhabitants of the temperate grasslands, woodlands
and mountain valleys of central Asia.
diamina is found from Spain, across central Europe to
Siberia, China, Korea and Japan.
Melitaea diamina, Drežnik Grad,
is a mid-elevation species found in meadows and woodland clearings.
larval foodplants include Valeriana,
Melitaea diamina, Plitvička,
unlike those of the very similar Heath Fritillary
Mellicta athalia, do not usually
mud-puddle. Both sexes visit a wide range of herbaceous flowers for