A sighting of the nearly extinct butterfly, the “Vanessa Multicolore,” occurred on June 5, 2018 in Elba over 100 years after it was last spotted. Investigations by the biologists of the University of Florence and the Legambiente of the Tuscan archipelago have led to the recent conclusion that the butterfly has in fact reappeared.
Also known as “Nymphalis Polychoros,” the butterfly has orange or red wings with black spots and was last observed in 1916 by the researcher Orazio Querci and the entomologist and doctor Roger Verity. “Nymphalis Polychoros,” was thought to be extinct ever since until photographer and naturalist Antonello Marchese saw it at Monte Perone in June.
With its surprising reappearance comes plans to reopen data collection programs on the Elban butterflies. The island of Elba is one of the largest islands in the Tuscan Archipelago and is particularly home to many butterflies. The butterfly sanctuary is a natural oasis located in Arcipelago Toscano National Park and is home to over 50 different butterfly species. New data collection on these butterflies will hopefully gather as much information as possible to implement conservation actions. (kelsey lentz)
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