Fritillaries - Melitaea

Eight species are placed in the genus Melitaea. The Glanville, Knapweed and Spotted are the most widespread of these, and therefore most likely to be seen. It is relatively easy to separate these three.

Not pictured.

Barred upperside pattern, row of postdiscal black spots on upperside.

Not pictured.

Far SE of Europe.

Similar to cinxia.

As cinxia, with no postdiscal spots.

Not pictured

Southern Spain / Portugal only.

Bright red, with incomplete markings.

Melitaea cinxia

Glanville Fritillary

Melitaea arduinna

Freyer's Fritillary

Melitaea phoebe

Knapweed Fritillary

Melitaea aetherie

Aetherie Fritillary

Male upperside

Female upperside


Underside showing round marginal spots


Not pictured

North Africa only

As didyma. Antennal club black (tipped orange in didyma, body sandy coloured. (white in didyma)

Not pictured

Underside hindwing marginal spots usually triangular. (round in didyma)

Very dark, although light subspecies do occur.

Melitaea didyma

Spotted Fritillary

Melitaea deserticola

Desert Fritillary

Melitaea trivia

Lesser Spotted Fritillary

Melitaea diamina

False Heath Fritillary




All pictures in these pages copyright to Simon Coombes. Permission must be sought and obtained for any use.