Genus: Erebia

Family:NymphalidaeRafinesque, 1815
Subfamily:SatyrinaeBoisduval, 1833
Tribe:ErebiiniTutt, 1896
Genus:ErebiaDalman, 1816
Type Species:ligea(Linnaeus, 1758)


Family: Nymphalidae

The Nymphalidae is a family of several thousand species found in all zoogeographical regions of the world. Most are medium or large in size, but the family is highly variable given that it also includes the Satyrinae, a subfamily that has been designated as a family in its own right in earlier classifications.

The forelegs in both sexes are vestigial and useless for walking. In the male, there are typically only 2 tarsal joints and the legs have a brush-like appearance, resulting in a common name for this family - the "brush-footed butterflies". The female foreleg has 4 tarsal joints which, when compared with the male, provides a mechanism of determining the sex of the adult. The midleg and hindleg are normal in both sexes and both tibia and tarsus may have spines.

Highslide JSHighslide JS

Pearl-bordered Fritillary (Boloria euphrosyne)
Photo © Nigel Kiteley

White Admiral (Limenitis camilla)
Photo © Peter Eeles

The forewing always has 12 veins. Given the variability of this family, there are no further distinguishing characteristics that apply to the family as a whole.

Highslide JSHighslide JSHighslide JS

Nymphalidae (Danainae)
Danaus plexippus

Nymphalidae (Satyrinae)
Pyronia tithonus

Nymphalidae (Nymphalinae)
Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary
Boloria selene

Photo © Timothy Freed, whose original drawings are shown in Moths and Butterflies of Great Britain and Ireland, Volume 7, Issue 1 (Emmet & Heath, 1989)

Subfamily: Satyrinae

Description to be completed.

Tribe: Erebiini

Description to be completed.

Genus: Erebia

Description to be completed.

The Butterflies and Moths of the World project, run by the British Museum of Natural History, has completed a detailed analysis of various genera and their type species. Click here to visit the relevant page for this genus.


This genus is represented by the species shown below.

Arran Brown - imago - Unknown location - Unknown date [Roger Gibbons]

Arran Brown
Erebia ligea
Photo © Roger Gibbons

Mountain Ringlet male - Irton Fell 12.06.2014

Mountain Ringlet
Erebia epiphron
Photo © Neil Freeman

Scotch-Argus- 5D32869 Arnside Aug 2012

Scotch Argus
Erebia aethiops
Photo © IainLeach

Almond-Eyed Ringlet, Parc du Mercantour, Alpes-Maritimes, France, 7th July 2014

Almond-eyed Ringlet
Erebia alberganus
Photo © David M