Mazarine Blue (Cyaniris semiargus)

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2016 photographs highlighted in green. Click on any photograph to go to an enlarged picture, or simply scroll down the page.

18204_male_Isère_12Jul09 25642_male_Alpes-Maritimes_10Jun11 36342_male_Valais, Switzerland_19Jul14
38221_male_Hautes-Alpes_7Jul15 7140_female_Var_18Jun07 18005_male_Isère_11Jul09
20884_male_Var_20Jun10 33344_male_Hautes-Alpes_3Jul13 32600_female_Var_10Jun13

A butterfly with a very wide altitude range, often being found at 2000m and sometimes considerably higher. It is quite widespread across Europe but usually not more than a few in any one place. The male is a deep strong blue with the veins marked black and with varying-width strong black borders, and the female plain brown with no marginal lunules.

The undersides of both sexes are quite similar: the male is blue-grey to greyish-brown and the female browner, although male undersides can be browner than one might expect. It is slightly larger than the average Common Blue (Polyommatus icarus).
ref sex

observations

alt. m
18204 M

showing the deep blue, especially of the upf, and black veins.

1120
25642 M almost identical to 18204, but probably better showing the beautiful deep blue of semiargus. 1400
36342 M a male, seen at high altitude, and with limited blue scales compared to the norm, despite being fresh. 2090
38221 M a male, only slightly darker than the norm, despite the high altitude. 2020
7140 F

a fresh female upperside, plain dark brown and almost completely unmarked.

780
18005 M

a male, the ground colour being brown-grey.

1120
20884 M

quite bluish in ground colour, and with very vestigial marginal markings.

830
33344 M a male, roosting in overcast conditions. 1430
32600 F a female, typical colouring. 220
21382 F

quite a strong and distinct brown ground colour.

1320

 

18204_male_Isère_12Jul09

 

25642_male_Alpes-Maritimes_10Jun11

 

36342_male_Valais, Switzerland_19Jul14

 

38221_male_Hautes-Alpes_7Jul15

 

7140_female_Var_18Jun07

 

18005_male_Isère_11Jul09

 

20884_male_Var_20Jun10

 

33344_male_Hautes-Alpes_3Jul13

 

32600_female_Var_10Jun13

 

21382_female_Alpes-Maritimes_3Jul10