Heliothea discoidaria Boisduval, 1840


Heliothea discoidaria: Adult (Andalusia, late June 2008) [N] Heliothea discoidaria: Adult (Andalusia, late June 2008) [N] Heliothea discoidaria: Adult (Andalusia, late June 2008) [M] Heliothea discoidaria: Habitat in Andalusien (Sierra de Huetor, late June 2008) [N]

Host plants:
According to literature Santolina (Asteraceae).

Habitat:
Heliothea discoidaria inhabits bush rich slopes and grasslands at medium altitudes (800-1700m above sea level) with the larval host plants.

Life cycle:
The caterpillars hibernate and the butterflies can be observed in June and July. I found them numerous in Andalusia (Sierra de Huetor and rarer in Sierra Nevada) in late June 2008. The diurnal moths rest similar to Spiris striata distally on blades of grass, and occasionally fly around slowly.

Endangerment: endangered

Endangerment factors:
Heliothea discoidaria is now pushed back to a few now often protected Sierras due to giant expansion of agriculture. The other, not protected mountains are often intensively cultivated to quite high elevations for orchards.

Remarks:
Heliothea discoidaria occurs only in Morocco (Middle Atlas) and Spain (locally in mountains).