Copyright: Per Hoffmann Olsen

Nymphalis xanthomelas (Esper, 1795)

Flight-period Central Europe:

  Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Conservation Status:

Austria [*1]
Vienna - Austria [*2]
  • English: Scarce Tortoiseshell
  • German/Austrian: Östlicher Großer Fuchs
  • Danish: Østlig takvinge
  • Image: 1920x1080
  • Location: Austria, Niederösterreich, Ober-Danegg
  • Date: 13/07/2013
  • Copyright: Per Hoffmann Olsen
  • Camera: Canon EOS 50D
  • Lens: Sigma 150mm APO Macro

Identification help

This species is very rare in Austria. During the 2014 summer a massive migration of N. xanthomelas was observed in the North-West of Europe. Austria is not exactly in the Nord-West of Europe, and this photo was taken in 2013 - so, anyway.

In the field its difficult to distinguish between a polychloros and xanthomelas. If you compare wings, like in this comparison photo, it is clear: to the left its N. xanthomelas - to the right the N. polychloros.

Nymphalis polychloros and xanthomelas compared


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I stumbled upon this in Austria in July 2013 - took it as the N. polychloros. First in 2017 i looked at it again - and i was surprised to find the N. xanthomelas.

Although the flight-period is around July until September, hibernated species could appear in May.


Read more here: Nymphalis xanthomelas (Esper, 1781) French with English abstract.

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