All the following species are variable in their markings.
In your specimen the ocellus (eye spot) may be smaller than typical and the underside of the hind wings may be more plain than typical. I take those factors into account when considering the following species.
To work through the list of candiates:
I have eliminated a few species because of their distribution, eg. Maniola nurag (Sardinia).
- Erebia mnestra
not quite right in various ways (ocellus, colour of hind wing, etc.)
- Erebia aethiopella
- Hyponephele lupinus - your specimen's hind wings are not scalloped enough
- Hyponephele lycaon (dusky meadow brown)
smaller than M. jurtina
appears to be more yellowish than H. lycaon
- Maniola jurtina
larger than H. lycaon
appears to be more orangish than H. lycaon
Because the size and general yellowish/orangish characters cannot be known reliably from your photo,
I cannot really choose between those last two species.
(My gut feeling is Maniola jurtina, but I cannot give that as a reliable ID.)
Because of their macroscopic similarity, one also has to expect that some photos online may be mis-identified. That further confuses the issue!
Hi Marcello, Mike,
I agree with Mike that this is jurtina. Without going through the reasons for rejecting the other possibilities I think we can find features of this butterfly to give us more confidence in the ID. First, it is clearly an old butterfly (a bit of the hind wing is missing, there is no white in the middle of the eye spot and the hind wing colours are very uniform) so I played around with it in a photo processing program. First, I think your colour balance is off because by adjusting the white balance I can get the more usual colours. Then (with a tweak in contrast) the two spots on the hind wing become clear (which are shown in my Collins).
Then I played around with some other effect to look for a contrast on the hind wing and got this.
You can just see the remains of the light and dark areas we expect in jurtina. I hope this puts your minds at rest.
sorry for the delay but I have some problems to login here, always proxy error o site unavailable (I contacted the admin 2 weeks ago but I didn't had any answer).
So, I know the M. jurtina is a bit hard to ID, I confuse this specie with other many times! There are a lot of variations and really, right now, I don't have time to stop on one subject for days ...
Your explanations are always many, many accurate, thanks!
Me too - I sometimes get the proxy error or I find the site is down for maintenance.
I just wait, sometimes for perhaps an hour.
(PS. 'very' not 'many' - just trying to be accurate!)