N A T U R K U N D L I C H E S   I N F O R M A T I O N S S Y S T E M

Zerynthia (Zerynthia) polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775)

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Papilio polyxena [Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775: 162.
Type locality: Austria, vicinity of Vienna
Type: destroyed in the Hofburg fire in 1848 (anonymous 2009b)

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
Many local forms and subspecies have been described for Z. polyxena (e.g. Nardelli & Hirschfeld 2002, Häuser et al. 2005, Nazari & Carbonell 2006). Higgins (1975) on the other hand recognizes but one subspecies (Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828), which is separated from the typical subspecies also by small differences in the male genitalia. Nevertheless, there are some populations with intermediate genitalia (Higgins 1975).

Papilio hypermnestra Scopoli, 1763. Type locality: Carniola. Junior primary homonym of Papilio hypermnestra Linnaeus, 1763.
Papilio hypsipyle Schulze, 1776: 221. Unnecessary replacement name for Papilio hypermnestra Scopoli, 1763.
[Papilio Nymphalis Phaleratus] rumina vulgaris Esper, 1781. Type locality: Non designated. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828. Type locality: Type locality: France, Alpes Maritimes. Subspecies
Papilio creusa Meigen, 1829. Type locality: Central Italy. Junior subjective synonym of Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828.
Zerynthia demnosia Freyer, 1831. Type locality: Yugoslavia, Dalmatia, Trieste, Fiume. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
Thais polyxena ab. ochracea Staudinger, 1861. Unavailable infrasubspecific name.
[Thais polyxena ?] polymnia Millière, 1880. Type locality: Greece, Euboea. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
Zerynthia polyxena thusnelda Fruhstorfer, 1908: 79. Type locality: Greece, Thessalia. Junior subjective synonym of Thais polyxena polymnia.
Zerynthia polyxena latiaris Stichel, 1907. Type locality: Italy, Lazio, Monte Cavo. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
Zerynthia polyxena ab. demaculata Schultz, 1908: 267. Unavailable infrasubspecific name.
Zerynthia polyxena var. gracilis Schultz, 1908: 267. Type locality: Turkey, Bithynia, Bursa. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
Zerynthia hypermnestra macedonia Eisner, 1974. Type locality: Macedonia, Skopje. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena var. gracilis Schultz, 1908.
Zerynthia polyxena ab. lativittata Schultz, 1908: 267. Unavailable infrasubspecific name.
Zerynthia polyxena ab. marpha Schultz, 1908: 267. Unavailable infrasubspecific name.
Zerynthia polyxena ab. nora Schultz, 1908: 267. Unavailable infrasubspecific name.
Zerynthia polyxena ab. punctata Schultz, 1908: 267. Unavailable infrasubspecific name.
Zerynthia polyxena ab. subalbida Schultz, 1908: 267. Unavailable infrasubspecific name.
Zerynthia polyxena ab. xenia Schultz, 1908: 267. Unavailable infrasubspecific name.
Zerynthia polyxena aberr. confluens Schultz, 1908: 79-80. Unavailable infrasubspecific name.
Zerynthia (Thais) polyxena reverdinii Fruhstorfer, 1908. Type locality: Italy, Liguria, Rapallo. Junior subjective synonym of Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828.
Zerynthia polyxena thesto Fruhstorfer, 1908: 16. Type Locality: Southern Russia, Saratow. Subspecies ?.
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] nemorensis Verity, 1919. Type locality: Italy, Toscana, Forte dei Martini. Junior subjective synonym of Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828.
Thais polyxena var. albanica Riemel, 1927. Type locality: Albania, Tirana. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] aemiliae Rocci, 1929. Type locality: Italy, Emilia Romagna. Junior subjective synonym of Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828.
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] padana Rocci, 1929. Type locality: unknown [Padania = northern Italy ?]. Junior subjective synonym of Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828.
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] taygetana Rosen, 1929. Type locality: Greece, Peloponnesos, Taygetos. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
Zerynthia hypermnestra linnea Bryk, 1932. Type locality: Italy, Elba. Junior subjective synonym of Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828.
Zerynthia hypermnestra petrii Bryk, 1932. Type locality: Russia, Cherson, Berislav. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] cassandra-clara Verity, 1947. Type locality: Croatia, Zagabria. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] microcreusa Verity, 1947. Type locality: France, Roquebrune. Junior subjective synonym of Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828.
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] deminuta Verity, 1947. Type locality: France, Nice, St. Bernabè. Junior subjective synonym of Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828.
Zerynthia hypsiphyle tristis de Lattin, 1950. Type locality: Turkey, Aydos-dagi. Subspecies ?.
Zerynthia hypermnestra bryki Eisner, 1954. Type locality: border of Montenegro and Herzegovina. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
Zerynthia hypermnestra bryki f. quincunx Eisner, 1954. Unavailable infrasubspecific name.
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] silana Storace, 1962. Type locality: Italy, Calabria, Sila Piccola. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
Zerynthia hypermnestra bosniensis Eisner, 1974. Type locality: Bosnia, Dol. Tuzla. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
Zerynthia hypermnestra idaensis Eisner, 1974. Type locality: Crete, Mt. Ida. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] nigra Sijaric, 1989. Type locality: Bosnia-Hercegovina, Sarajevo. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] sontae Sijaric, 1989. Type locality: Serbia, Backa. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] carmenae Sabariego and Martinez, 1991. Type locality: Bulgaria, Kalofer. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
Zerynthia polyxena f. diabolica Schulte & Weiss, 1991. Type locality: France, Var, Chateauvert, 83670 Barjols. Unavailable infrasubspecific name.
Zerynthia polyxena decastroi Sala and Bollino, 1992. Type locality: Italy, Prealpi Venete. Junior subjective synonym of Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828.
Zerynthia polyxena aegidii Nardelli, 1993. Type locality: Italy, Prealpi Venete. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena decastroi Sala and Bollino, 1992.
Zerynthia polyxena michaelis Nardelli, 1993. Type locality: Italy, Apulia. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775) ?.
Zerynthia polyxena patrizii Nardelli, 1993. Type locality: Italy, Calabria, Costa Ionica. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).
[Zerynthia polyxena ?] caucasiae Nardelli and Hirschfeld, 2002. Type locality: Black Sea, Sothsi. Junior subjective synonym of Zerynthia polyxena polyxena ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775).

Southern Festoon
La Diane
Osterluzeifalter
Polissena

Habit:

   
Z. polyxena polyxena : without data Z. polyxena polyxena: without data    
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
   

Description of adults: Examined: 1 , 1 . Wing expanse: 49 mm, 56 mm. Head black, behind eyes and between antennae with red scaling and scarce, brownish hair-like scales; frons with long black, on top brownish duft of hair-like scales; palpi black on upperside, laterally scaled beige and dark pinkish, on underside with long distant, proximally light brownish, distally black hair-like scales; antennae about 1/3 of forewing length, dark brown on top, lighter on underside; bulbs of antennae black; thorax black, on upperside with scarce, only at basis of wings denser, beige to light brownish hair-like scales; wings on upperside ochreous to brownish-yellow with dark brown to black-brown markings; along outer margin of forewing a dark brown, delicate undulate line with very wide, but close coiling (one bow each between two veins); this line accompanied postdiscally by an irregularly dentated, dark brown narrow cross fascia; broad, black-brown spots in cross direction to cell, reaching from costa across width of cell, at about 1/4, 1/2 and 3/4 of cell length as well as at discus; a black-brown, narrow bent cross fascia from costa to M3, eventually centered with a red spot between R2 and R3; in anal field, a broad black-brown crosswise spot, elongating the spot at 1/2 of cell length to a broken fascia; a small spot anterior to middle of inner margin; base of wing blackish; hindwing with undulated outer margin, as well as an undulated, dark brown twin line along outer margin, less closely coiled like on forwing, but also with one bow each between two veins; this twin line posterior of M2 accompanied by a small light blue spot each between veins, proximally followed by a somewhat larger, black bordered crimson spot; a similar red spot each also in subcostal area and between M1 and M2; black-brown spots between veins slightly distal of cell, very small anteriorly, increasingly bigger posteriorly; in cell, an irregular black-brown spot, medially divided in longitudinal direction by a delicate light line, eventually dissolved in several spots; basis and inner margin black-brown by irregularly confluent spots; underside ligther in ground colour than upperside, but with similar markings; on forewings, cell spots at 1/4 and 3/4 of cell length at least in anterior part centered crimson red, as well as a bigger part of short postdiscal cross fasciae; light space between outer undulate line and accompanying postdiscal fascia in apical area with reddish shimmer; hindwing underside even lighter in ground colour, almost whitish; light space between twin undulating line pinkish; a blue spot only at anal angle; small red spots also along inner margin and at basis of cell; legs dark brown with reddish to reddish-brown tufts of hair-like scales; abdomen black-brown, laterally with a longitudinal row of red spots dorsally and of yellow spots ventrally.

Variability:
The extension of the black wing markings is subject to some variation, as well as the presence or absence of a small red spot between veins R2 and R3 at the costal margin of the forewing upperside. The blue spots in the submarginal band of the hindwing upperside are often more or less reduced. Females with an intensive ockery yellow upperside are abundant in some place and are called f. ochracea Staudinger. Numerous other forms and local races have been named, differing in the extense of the dark and red markings primarily.

Distribution:

According to Häuser (2006), the species occurs in the following countries: Albania, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Kazakhstan, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey and Ukraine. De Prins (2004) records the species also for Germany, Poland and, doubtfully, for Switzerland.

Biology:

 
Croatia, Dalmatia, near Dubrovnik, south of Slano, 2003.05.03 Ukraine, Kharkov, 2008.05.17 Ukraine, Kharkov, 2008.05.10  
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: www.flickr.com: eugene_kar
Detailed view
Picture from: www.flickr.com: eugene_kar
Detailed view
 

The animals inhabit hot, dry and often rocky slopes, as well as similar locations in the lowlands with some grasses and shrubs or wood edges. An example for such biotopes is open macchia on calcareous grounds (Kurz & Kurz 2012). Not or only extensively utilized terraces are inhabited also. The butterflies are on the wing in one generation from the end of March to the beginning of July (preferably from end of April till end of May).

Stages in development:

     
Larva: Slovakia, Malé Karpaty Mts., 2004.06.22      
Picture from: www.flickr.com: Fenda Peter (creative commons)
Detailed view
     

Egg:
The egg is yellowish, somewhat flattened and rounded. Prior to hatching of the larva, its colour becomes blackish. The eggs are deposited singly or in small heaps on the underside of the leaves of the larva´s foodplants (Forster & Wohlfahrt, 1976).

Larva:
The larva is greyish brown to reddish yellow with 6 distinctly hairy protrusions per segment. The latter are reddish brown with black edges. Full fed, the larva also has a dark lateral stripe, which is missing only on the last segments (Forster & Wohlfahrt, 1976). It feeds on various species of Aristolochia, becoming specialized on a certain species after the initial uptake of food. The larvae like to rest on the leaves, often in full sunshine (Tolman & Lewington, 1998).

Pupa:
Pupation takes place on stems, on the bark of trees or beneath stones, the pupa being fixed headup with a silken threat. The pupa is long, slender, of yellowish grey colour. On the head it bears black dots with a faint darker shadowing. The pupa hibernates.

Anatomy:

Z. polyxena polyxena -genitalia, dorsal view, penis and right valve removed: Montenegro Z. polyxena polyxena -genitalia, valve: Montenegro Z. polyxena cassandra -genitalia, valve: Southern France Z. polyxena cassandra -genitalia, penis (aedoeagus): Southern France
Picture from: © Higgins 1975, modified
Detailed view
Picture from: © Higgins 1975, modified
Detailed view
Picture from: © Higgins 1975, modified
Detailed view
Picture from: © Higgins 1975, modified
Detailed view

Genitalia. "Valve wide, almost three times as long as small uncus and tegumen, posterior margin irregular, dentate near apex, harpe narrow, pointed, arising from inferior margin; penis straight, narrow, tapering to pointed apex, base bilobed." (Higgins 1975). In Z. polyxena cassandra, the valve margin is distinctly less irregular and less dentate. In Italy however, characters may be intermediate (Higgins, 1975).

Diagnosis:

Z. polyxena : without data Z. rumina : without data Z. polyxena polyxena -genitalia, valve: Montenegro Z. polyxena cassandra -genitalia, valve: Southern France
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: wikimedia commons: Sarefo (creative commons), modified
Detailed view
Picture from: © Higgins 1975, modified
Detailed view
Picture from: © Higgins 1975, modified
Detailed view
     
Z. rumina -genitalia, valve: Southern France      
Picture from: © Higgins 1975, modified
Detailed view
     

Zerynthia rumina (Linné, 1758), being sympatric with Z. polyxena in southern France, bears several red spots on the forewing upperside, whereas Z. polyxena has none (Papilio cassandra Geyer, 1828) or only one such spot (typical form).

In the -genitalia, the anterior margin of the valve of Z. rumina shows a significant indentation which is absent in Z. polyxena. In the taxon cassandra, the anterior margin of the valve is less irregularly dentated (Higgings, 1975). Therefore, cassandra is often treated as a separate subspecies, occuring in southern France and mainland Italy.

Genetics:

Chromosome number (haploid): 30-31 (Higgins 1975).

A significant genetic divergence (2.4 %) has been found in an 825 bp long segment of subunit I of cytochrome oxidase between Italian and other populations from the species´range, this divergence being larger than between several established species. On the other hand, the divergence between populations except the Italian ones, has been found only to be 0.7 % (Nazari & Sperling 2007).

Worth knowing:

Sources:

anonymous 2009b. Das Naturhistorische Museum Wien. Forschung. 2. Zoologische Abteilung (Entomologie). Geschichte. URL: http://http://www.nhm-wien.ac.at/Content.Node/forschung/2zoo/geschichte.html [online 15 September 2009].
Denis, M. & I. Schiffermüller 1775. Ankündigung eines systematischen Werkes von den Schmetterlingen der Wienergegend, herausgegeben von einigen Lehrern am K.K. Theresianum. Augustin Bernardi, Wien. 322 pp.
De Prins, W. 2004. Papilionidae. In - Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken (eds.). Lepidoptera, Moths. – Fauna Europaea version 1.1, http://www.faunaeur.org [online 2008.07.29].
Forster W. & Th.A. Wohlfahrt 1976. Die Schmetterlinge Mitteleuropas, 2, 2. Auflage, Franckh´sche Verlagshandlung, Stuttgart.
Häuser, C. 2006. Papilionidae. In: Bisby F.A., Roskov Y.R., Orrell T.M., Nicolson D., Paglinawan L.E., Bailly N., Kirk P.M., Bourgoin T., van Hertum J., eds. (2008). Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life: 2008 Annual Checklist. Digital resource at www.catalogueoflife.org/annual-checklist/2008/. Species 2000: Reading, U.K.
Häuser, C. L., J. Holstein & A. Steiner 2005. The Global Butterfly Information System. http://www.globis.insects-online.de. Last updated 14.04.2011 [online 22 January 2013].
Higgins, L. 1975. The Classification of European Butterflies, Collins, London
Kurz, M. A. & M. E. Kurz 2000–2012. Naturkundliches Informationssystem. – URL: http://www.nkis.info [online 16 March 2012].
Nardelli, U. & G. Hirschfeld 2002. Abberations, formes et sous-especes de Zerynthia polyxena Denis and Schiffermüller, 1775 (Lepidoptera: Papilionidae). Lambillionea 102: 223-240.
Nazari, V. & F. Carbonell 2006. Zerynthia polyxena (Denis and Schiffermüller, 1775). Version 07 July 2006 (under construction). http://tolweb.org/Zerynthia_polyxena/65415/2006.07.07 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/.
Nazari, V. & F. A. H. Sperling 2007. Mitochondrial DNA divergence and phylogeography in western Palaearctic Parnassiinae (Lepidoptera: Papilionidae): How many species are there ?. Insect systematics and Evolution, <38:2, 121-138.
Tolman T. & R. Lewington 1998. Die Tagfalter Europas und Nordwestafrikas, übersetzt von M. Nuß, Franckh-Kosmos Verlags-GmbH & Co., Stuttgart.

Publication data:

history:
Kurz Michael: 2008.08.04
Kurz Michael: 2008.08.14
Kurz Michael: 2012.03.16
Kurz Michael: 2012.07.22
Kurz Michael: 2013.01.22
Kurz Michael: 2013.01.23
Kurz Michael: 2013.01.24
Kurz Michael: 2013.01.25
Document reviewed by:
not reviewed: 2013.01.25
Document released by:
Kurz Michael: 2013.01.25

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