Silver-studded Blue. Plebejus argus (Linaeus, 1758)
Wingspan: From 2.4 to 2.8 cm.
Closed wings: They are light grey or even white, something typical for the subspecies Hypochionus, which is present in Andalusia. There are orange arched spots, softly outlined in black towards the inner part of the wings, and big bright blue and black spots in the arches on the hindwings. The last but one dot from the series is separated towards the exterior.
Open wings: They usually do not stretch their wings. Male butterflies are bright blue with thin black margins. This colour also stretches towards the inside thanks to the veins. Black dots can be seen on the hindwings outer margin. Female is brown with large arched orange spots on the margins of the wings, similar to those on closed wings.
When its wings are closed, the white parts, orange arches and bright blue colour make it unique.
Biology and Habitat
There is only one generation a year, which flies from June to July.
These butterflies are typical for medium-high and high mountains at an altitude between 1200 and 1850 m in Málaga. They always live in open zones, such as stony areas, bushes and pasture. The caterpillars feed on varied plants, such as leguminous plants that belong to Lotus, Astragalus and Ulex genus, and the family Crassulaceae from the genus Sedum.
Distribution in the Great Path
In Málaga, this species is limited to certain places, such as the Sierra de las Nieves, and the Prieta and Tejeda Mountains. None of its colonies has been spotted close to the GMP, but there might be some of them at specific locations on stages 6, 11, and 23.