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1529 Views 13 Replies Last post: Jun 10, 2013 1:21 PM by awillkey RSS
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Apr 22, 2013 7:44 AM

Surely this is farinosa?

Photographed near Madrid 18th April.

 

Powdered.JPG

 

This has the scalloping on the hind wing and the forewing costa is very rounded. Why should this not be identified as Gonepteryx  farinosa (Powdered Brimstone) other than the geographic location? My guide shows that the forewing costas of farinosa and rhami having  concave sections in the forewing costa and the difference being the rounding near the root of the wing, farinosa being generously rounded as in this specimen. Rhami does not have scalloping. So is this really possible?

 

Alan


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    May 2, 2013 3:34 PM (in response to awillkey)
    Re: Surely this is farinosa?

    Hello,

    Geographic location is very important. This specimen was found way out of G. farinosa's natural range, so by this alone I would guess it's not that species. It also looks more like the Brimstone illustrated in my book than a Powdered Brimstone: underwing green rather than yellow, well developed 'tail' on hindwing. I think it's G. rhamni.

    Yours,

    Florin

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        May 3, 2013 4:37 PM (in response to awillkey)
        Re: Surely this is farinosa?

        Hello,

        Thanks for your reply. I will try to find the book next week. I will also ask for help one of our butterfly experts.

        Yours,

        Florin

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    May 25, 2013 1:45 PM (in response to awillkey)
    Re: Surely this is farinosa?

    I have a photo guide Butterflies of Europe by Trstan Lafranchis which shows pictures of your butterfly.  The farinosa has definite white tips on the upper surface of the antennae which it says is a defining character compared with brown tips on rahmni.

     

    This might help but I am not surprised that the identification is difficult.

     

    Tony

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        May 29, 2013 1:26 PM (in response to awillkey)
        Re: Surely this is farinosa?

        Hello,

        Sorry to reply so late, and thanks for posting the images in the Haahtela book. I don't have it here in the AMC, but I do have the Lafranchis book. As far as I understand, the best character is the anterior margin of the forewing. In rhamni the forewing costa are slightly concave, while in farinosa they are regularly rounded. So that line is usually straight or rounded in farinosa, and bent inwards in rhamni. The photos in the Haahtela book seem to show this pattern.

        The other character is the antennal club, supposedly white(ish?) in farinosa. If you google images of farinosa, you will find some with clear white antennal clubs. One of the photos in the Lafranchis book (page 60) looks like this, but I noticed that rhamni seems to have light-coloured antennal tips depending on how the light reflects on them.

        I have asked a Museum butterfly expert for help, and he has found another expert who will take a look at your photo, but he's not in for a couple of weeks and he will reply when he returns.

        Best wishes,

        Florin

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          Re: Surely this is farinosa?

          PS: compare photos on these pages as well - they may help a bit:

          G. rhamni  http://www.eurobutterflies.com/species_pages/rhamni.htm

          G. farinosa http://www.eurobutterflies.com/species_pages/farinosa.htm

          Yours,

          Florin

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            Jun 10, 2013 12:08 PM (in response to awillkey)
            Re: Surely this is farinosa?

            Hello again,

            I have a reply from one of our experts. Here it is:

             

            "Dear Florin

            I have the following comments on this discussion.

             

            I would have to say that this is G. rhamni, based on the concave forewing costa. The character of the scalloped margin to the hindwing  assumes that the wing is flat and is viewed at 90 degrees; in the photo the  wings are clearly at an angle, i.e. so any distortion to the wing might produce this scalloped effect. I am doubtful of the value of the apical hook character, but its use would also depend on the wings being flat. I would also suggest that Interpretation of wing colour and the possible pale tips to the antennae from a single photo is not wholly reliable. The geographical aspect is significant, given the known range of G. farinosa; if the presence of this species in Spain was suspected, it would require confirmation by examination of specimens.

             

            Regards

            John"

             

            I hope this helps.

            Florin

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