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Butterflies and Other Insects of Andalucía

Spanish Swallowtail. Photo Eva Bratek

Scarce (or Spanish)  Swallowtail. Photo Eva Bratek. Click to enlarge.

Spying on the world of insects can be extremely addictive. Once you realise what drama lies in the grass, around river banks and in the foliage, you may be hooked forever. Butterflies have an easy appeal; it is hard not to be fascinated by their colours and patterns or their life-cycle.

There are several exciting species of butterflies and other insects in Andalucía and  the Serranía de Ronda area.

African Mantis. Photo Eva Bratek.

African Mantis. Photo Eva Bratek.Click to enlarge.

May, June and July are good months for butterflies in Andalucía, although some species such as Clouded Yellow, Bath White, Small Copper, Wall Brown or Painted Lady can be seen as early as February. On warm days in December and January you may spot an occasional Red Admiral as well. The real treats such as Spanish Festoon, Spanish and Common Swallowtail, the Cardinal or Adonis Blue are best viewed in late spring and throughout the summer.

As a break from butterflies keep your eyes open for various species of mantis inhabiting our area with the quite rare African Mantis (Sphodromantis viridis). You can also seek out the mesmerising and delicate Thread Lacewing (Nemoptera bipennis) which is around in June.

Violet Carpenter Bee. Photo Eva Bratek

Violet Carpenter Bee. Photo Eva Bratek. click to enlarge.

Then it is time to look for Dragonflies and Damselflies at the  ponds and the Guadiaro and Campobuche river around Montejaque and Grazalema villages until sunset when it is time for a glass of wine and reflecting on the day´s encountered treasures and to look forward to tommorow´s discoveries. Maybe you will spot the Dung Beetle, or the Giant Peacock Month, or the impressive Violet Carpenter Bee. Please email for a list of insect species of interest for the area and visit our Photo Gallery below for more insect images. All photos are clickable to enlarge. Photos by Eva Bratek.