Zoom in for details!: Esparsetten-Widderchen (Zygaena carniolica)   -   eastern burnet     1DX_4937-klein

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Getting up early assures sleeping rams 🙂

Esparsette ram (Zygaena carniolica) – eastern burnet


The Esparsetten-Aries or Krainer Aries (Zygaena carniolica) is a butterfly (moth) from the Aries family (Zygaenidae). Both the caterpillars and the adult animals are poisonous and document this for predators with the help of their eye-catching warning coloring. The species became the “Insect of the year 2008"Selected.

Because of its characteristic drawing on the forewings – the red spots on the black background are lightly outlined – the Esparsetten-Aries is usually quite clearly distinguishable from other Aries species known as "blood droplets" in Central Europe. However, the light border can sometimes be faint or missing and the color intensity of the red spots can vary.

Crepuscular burnet or Eastern burnet

This species can be found in most of Europe, except Britain Isles and northern Scandinavia. It is also present from Western Asia to Iran.

It inhabits warm and dry areas, grasslands and limestone substrate, steppe slopes and dry pastures.


Lateral view
The wingspan is 30-35 mm. Forewings are bluish-black with six red spots surrounded by yellow. Hindwings have a red color with a black border. The outer spots are often in the shape of a crescent. The abdomen is black-blue, sometimes with a red belt. (5) The caterpillar is light green with a series of triangular black spots on the sides of the body. Pupae are black-brown, with a white or yellowish ovoid cocoon.

This species is rather similar to Zygaena algira, Zygaena maroccana, Zygaena occitanica, Zygaena orana and Zygaena youngi.

It is an univoltine species. Adults are on wing from July to August. Adults feed on the nectar of flowers in the Fabaceae family. The larvae feed on Lotus, Anthyllis, Dorycnium and Onobrychis species. (7) They frequently rest large numbers on flowers. Pupation occurs in May-June. The caterpillars hibernate.

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