Lang's short-tailed Blue

Leptotes pirithous (Linnaeus, 1767)

Status

Corfu Status: Present EU Red Data Status 2010: Least Concern

Description

A small butterfly with underside light brown with variable pale transverse stripes, and a tail on the hindwing, with two blue spots. The males upperside are blue with a black border, whilst the female is grey brown with a blue suffusion. The underside are distinctive, with possible confusion with Lampides boeticus, which has a browner underside and slightly larger. 

Habitat Requirements

Most commonly encountered in gardens and scrubby sites.

Larval Foodplants

Sambucus ebulus, Broom Cytisus scoparius - not on Corfu, Lucerne Medicago sativa, Yellow Sweet Clover Melilotus officinalis, Purple-loosestrife Lythrum salicaria. Anne Sordinas has found ovae and reared larvae on Plumbago spp. possibly auriculata.

Observations

Best observed later in the year when it is particularily easy to photograph on the blooms of Aromatic Inula Dittrichia vicosa.

Flight Times

Key to Seasons
Spring (Mar, Apr, May) Summer (Jun, Jul, Aug)
Autumn (Sep, Oct, Nov) Winter (Dec, Jan, Feb)

First and Last Sightings

These dates are based on verified sightings submitted via this website.

Year First Last
*2019 19th April 2019 23rd November 2019

Years marked * based on external data.

Taxonomy

  • Vernacular/Common Name: Lang's short-tailed Blue
  • Family: Lycaenidae (Leach, 1815)
  • Sub-family: Polyommatinae (Swainson 1831)
  • Tribe: Polyommatini (Swainson 1831)
  • Sub-tribe: Leptotina ()
  • Genus: Leptotes (Scudder, 1876)
  • Species: pirithous (Linnaeus, 1767)

References

  • Ghavalas, N. & J.G. Coutsis. 2018 Phegea 46 (1) 10-20.
  • Ghinis, S, Vojsava, G. Gkinis, S (2013) Butterflies of Corfu, Corfu Press.
  • Sutton P. G. (April 2012) A revised checklist of the butterflies (Rhopalocera) of Corfu (Kerkira) The Bulletin of the Amateur Entomologists’ Society, Volume 71, Number 501, 63 to 77.