Distinguishing Pyronia species (Butterflies)

Hello everyone,

This summer I got the chance to photograph a lot of butterflies. Since then I had no time to upload my observations, but I’m trying to catch up on that. This means I’m learning to identify butterflies as I go (I’m able to ID the most common and unique species that occur in Portugal, but I’m a total nullity when it comes to distinguishing the more “tricky” taxa).

One of the groups that give me trouble when identifying is the Pyronia genus. 3 species of Pyronia occur in Portugal: P. cecilia, P. tithonus and P. bathseba. The last one is rather easy to distinguish from the first two. But the first two always give me trouble…

I tried reading about this topic, but my Lepidoptera guides are either too generic or a bit outdated, so there is not much information there.

Can anyone shed some light on the best way to distinguish those two species? Or perhaps recommend me some literature to read?

Thanks a lot in advance!

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Hi @joaolemoslima, with this I can help out. I’ve learned a lot from other people and finally I can give something in return. :-) Here is a really good and detailed key to the three species; it’s in Spanish, but I suppose you can understand it:


Thank you very much for the identification key! It will be very usefull!

Picture guide formulated via photoshop from internet supplied photos. These may help with identification.

heres one where they are all together.

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That is a great and usefull resource! Thank you so much

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