Mountain Apollo (Parnassius apollo) - Wiki
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[Photo] La bildo estas kopiita de wikipedia:de. La originala priskribo estas: Apollofalter (Parnassius Apollo) auf Distel. Foto A. Birken http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benutzer:Leipnizkeks
The Apollo or Mountain Apollo (Parnassius apollo), is a butterfly of the Papilionidae family. It is found on mountains in Europe usually above 1000m up to 2000m, preferring flowery meadows and mountain pastures. This species is of interest to entomologists due to the variety of subspecies, often only restricted to a specific valley in the alps. Related species can be found all over the world. The caterpillar's favourite food plant is Stonecrop (Sedum).
In Finland Apollo was one of the first species of insects declared endangered. The Apollo population in Finland and Sweden decreased drastically during the 1950's. The reason for this is not known, but it is commonly thought to be because of a disease. In Sweden it is since restricted to areas that have limestone in the ground, suggesting that the decrease could hypothetically be related to acid rain.
The Apollo also known as the "great eye" is on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Animals, in Appendix II in CITES and is mentioned in annex IV of Habitats Directive. It is protected in other states: the Principality of Liechtenstein, Czech Republic (as critically threatened species in Czech code, Decree for implementation, No. 395/1992 Sb. (and No. 175/2006 Sb.)).
One of the loveliest species of butterfly in the Alps, it is white with two red, black-edged "eye marks" on its wings. The Small Appollo (Parnassius delius) is found in the high mountains while the Clouded Apollo (Parnassius mnemosyne) lives in the valleys. The Apollo caterpillar lives on woodlark Spur and rock plants and is a velvety blue-black with small orange spots.
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