The microdistribution of five butterfly species through their flying season was analyzed in a mosaic‐like habitat, brought about by secondary succession In order to explain the patterns observed, activity patterns and the use and distribution of nectar sources were determined Emphasis was laid on the changing allocation of visits to flower species and changing abundances of flowers during the season The use of nectar sources was basically limited to three flower species, Centaurea scabiosa, C bracteata and Serratula tinctoria As a consequence, niche breadth values were generally low and niche overlaps generally high Some butterflies changed their patterns of flower visits during the season and therefore reduced niche overlap with the other butterfly species The microdistribution of Melanargia galathea, Lysandra condon, Ochlodes venatus and Lictoria achilleae was strongly influenced by the distribution of their preferred nectar sources as well as by areas generally rich in flowers Changing flower preferences of Melanargia galathea and Lysandra coridon males during the course of the season were also expressed by changes in the correlations between the distribution of these butterflies and their nectar plants The distribution of nectar sources was not found to be of importance for Coenonympha arcanta, a species which rarely visited flowers
Ecography – Wiley
Published: Mar 1, 1995
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