Real Time Web Analytics

Monday, January 4, 2010

Butterfly of Hungary-Magyar

Dear friends,
In the last few days, I did not keep good health and I stayed away from blogging.  Now I am posting some thing of Hungary.

Butterfly - General

Many butterflies migrate in order to avoid adverse environmental conditions (like cold weather). Butterfly migration is not well understood. Some can migrate only short distances but others migrate thousands of miles.

After bees, butterflies are the second largest group of pollinators. To increase harvests, useful insect like bees and butterflies should not be harmed, butterflies are not only attractive but also nice friends.

Butterfly - Hungary

This wonderful country brims with culture and natural beauty. The Hungary's butterfly population is without parallel larger than anywhere else in Europe

Hungary is surrounded by the Carpathian Mountains that hold many attractive mountain species while within the Carpathian Basin we can find an amazing variety of different habitats ranging from special wet meadows, alkaline marshes, steppes through to extensive oak, beech, evergreen woods, limestone slopes and volcanic hills. No wonder that Hungary is one of the richest countries in the Old Continent in terms of butterfly and dragonfly species. The country hosts almost 200 butterfly species including Hungarian Glider, Southern Festoon, Lesser Clouded Yellow, Large Blue, Iolas Blue, Zephyr Blue, Large Copper, Freyer's Purple Emperor, Poplar Admiral, Scarce Fritillary and many more. Tours are conducted to visit the finest butterfly habitats of the country covering more than 120 species.

Hungary has been long established as one of Europe top bird watching home. But this beautiful country land locked at the heart of the continent is less well known for its butterfly. The modern farming practice is increasing. But many areas still framed with low intensity, wild life friendly techniques for generations. As a result, butterfly still flourish and these beauties of nature are common site in the flower meadows and woodlands. It is reported that nearly 200 species are found in this area, which is also reportedly well over three times that are found in the Britains.

Aggtelek National Park - This lies along Hungary border with Slovakia which is in 4 hour reach from the capital. This is situated in one of the most sceneic parts of the country.In Aggtelek National Park we can watch and see for ourself a mixture of habitats ranging from very dry hillsides to wet valleys. These areas boast a terrific list of butterflies and we should be in for quite a treat. We expect to find such rare species as Eastern Short-tailed, Osiris, Mountain Alcon, Large, Chapman's and Anomalous Blue, Lesser Spotted and Pallas's Fritillary, Hungarian and Common Glider, Purple Emperor and Large Tortoiseshell

Bukk Hills

The heart of the Bükk Hills is famous for its karst plateau. The place attract hill toppers like the Common and Scarce Swallowtails with a possible late Clouded Apollo. Southern Small White, Mountain Green-veined White and Fenton’s Wood White will be among the more challenging species to seek out. In the Hor Valley, several Copper species fly in this area including Purple-shot, Large, Scarce and Purple-edged, joined by Small, Chestnut and Pearly Heath. Duke of Burgundy, High Brown and Niobe Fritillary are all common species.

The Hortobágy Region area is also having great butterfly species as well such as Swallowtail, Scarce Swallowtail, Eastern Bath White, Eastern Pale Clouded Yellow, Large Copper, Grizzled Skipper and Small Skipper.

Hungary’s geographic position and complex climate make it a fascinating place for those interested in butterflies. After the last ice ages, species from Southern Europe, the Balkans as well as from Asia and Asia Minor dispersed into the Carpathian Basin. The varied climate, with continental, boreal and Mediterranean influences, facilitated this process. As a result, Hungary now combines butterflies that are familiar to theWestern European traveller with Asian and Mediterranean species. Prominent members of these two categories are the Pallas’s Fritillary and the Cardinal respectively. Recently, we have witnessed very interesting dispersive behavior of these two large fritillaries. All over Europe, 2003 was a year when the prevailing conditions favoured such dispersal. In the first half of July, after an exceptionally hot and dry spring, both the Pallas’s Fritillary and the Cardinal were on the move in Hungary, the Pallas’s travelling westwards and the Cardinal moving north. Butterflies of each species settled in a beautiful valley along the south eastern edge of the Bükk Hills in north eastern Hungary, far from where they were originally found. In the five years prior to 2003 both species were absent here. The valley has a good population of Corncrakes and is being managed so that the birds are not disturbed during the breeding season. This delay in mowing till late summer benefits Pallas’s Fritillary

The conservationists may describe a valley in Hungary that is butterfly paradise as well. A survey in this damp stream-valley some years ago, produced an incredible 68 butterfly species. Particularly striking were the 16 Fritillary species, including Dark Green, High Brown, Silver washed and Marbled. In addition, we observed Camberwell Beauty, Lesser Purple and Purple Emperor, Large Tortoiseshell and Common Glider. Earlier in the season, Scarce Fritillary, Clouded Apollo, Chequered Skipper and seven other species were sighted. Threats Unfortunately, expansion of such exciting butterflies is mirrored by the decline of others. As elsewhere in Europe, the biggest threat centres on the abandonment of traditional pastures, hayfields and forest-steppe habitat. Forest-steppes were once home to the Danube Clouded Yellow. This species is on the verge of extinction not just in Hungary but globally, due to the cessation of coppice management and loss of forest pasture. The importance of hayfields can be illustrated by the decline in numbers of Dusky and Scarce Large Blues, Marsh Fritillaries and Large Coppers. Although not yet rare, because their habitat is still relatively common, traditional management has disappeared from most of the localities. Pastures provide habitat for several rare Hungarian species. The Anomalous Blue and Osiris Blue are species that originate from The Balkans. They need large populations of the host plant, Sanfoin, which occurs on dry, unproductive sites. Afforestation and cessation of grazing are the primary threats to these enigmatic species. Opportunities There is a growing interest in Hungary and neighboring countries as destinations for butterfly holidays. The decline of biodiversity in the West encourages eco tourists to explore countries to the East. This is a sad but hopeful development, as eco-tourism may stimulate local authorities to maintain their natural resources. It is reported that the promotion given by the EU of intensive cultivation of waste land, there is growing danger of the destruction of large swathes of butterfly habitats in Hungary.

Hereunder I also post some stamps of Magyar Posta.  The set may not be full. However, I would like to share some more later on.

1 comment: