Euphydryas aurinia (Rottemburg, 1775) Marsh Fritillary, Scabiosen Scheckenfalter, Damier de la succise, Шашечница авриния.
Distribution and biological peculiarities in Armenia: The species is widely distributed across Eurasia, mostly occupying temperate belt of it. The main host plant isSuccisa pratensis, but can other species, such as Knautia arvensis and the Scabiosa columbaria are also known. In Armenia the species is widely distributed across the country, mainly occupying wet grasslands and woodlands, but also occurring in other dryer habitats with a small numbers. The elevation range occupied by the species is from 1000 to about 2200 m a.s.l. Flight period in lower elevations of South-eastern Armenia begins in late May and lasts until end of July in single generation.
Population dynamics: In typical habitat the species is quite abundant, however the population trend during 2003-2013 shows moderate decline (p<0.01). The species is rather specialized for particular group of the plants - Scabiosus. Meanwhile our observations demonstrated that overgrazing influences diversity and abundance of various plant species including Scabiosus species. In the same time the species is mainly distributed in various grasslands, where seasonal livestock husbandry takes place. Since the pastures and the range-lands are mainly poorly managed, the grazing is implemented in an intensive way, which has a negative impact on habitat and its butterfly fauna.
Conservation measures: The species is included in the European Red Lists as Vulnerable, however it has not been evaluated for Global Red List as well as for the Red Book of Animals of Armenia. Preliminary assessment of the conservation status of the species at National level suggests its conservation status as Near Threatened. The species is not included in the CITES as there is almost no trade of it. It is also not included in the Appendices of Bern Convention. At current part of its range in Armenia is covered by Protected Areas and Emerald Sites. However significant portion of its habitat doesn't have any protection status. To protect the species it is important to complete its formal assessment for the National Red Data Book, and further to provide safe connection between populations located in existing Protected Areas via system of corridors, which would require development of management plans for the corridors, including pasture management. Development of the network of Prime Butterfly Area can become a necessary first step in the process of habitat conservation of the species.