The black mountain ringlet butterfly (Percnodaimon merula) survives in the harsh alpine zones of the South Island. It is dark to absorb sunlight, and basks on rocks to increase its body temperature. When warmed, adults are alert and fly about. They lay their eggs on sun-warmed rocks so that they incubate faster. The life cycle of the species can extend over two or three years. For much of this time they are dormant, as the alpine environment’s low temperatures restrict activity for half of every year.
Te whakamahi i tēnei tūemi
Photograph by Brian Patrick
This item has been provided for private study purposes (such as school projects, family and local history research) and any published reproduction (print or electronic) may infringe copyright law. It is the responsibility of the user of any material to obtain clearance from the copyright holder.
Tāpiritia te tākupu hou