Distribution of Butterflies in Europe (and adjacent areas)

As announced in the "Distribution Atlas of Butterflies in Europe" by Kudrna et al. (2011), we are happy to present the next stage of the project which is conducted as a team work under auspices of UFZ and GfS.

As a first step we now present online distribution maps of most European butterfly species in a gallery format. We are currently also developing a WebGIS platform to provide more flexibility. Detailed species pages are in production and will follow later.

The new maps now also cover Belarus and Asian Turkey and are based on the UTM grid system. Further extension to countries within the Western Palaearctic is planned for the future. For many countries (including Portugal, Spain, Italy, Slovenia, Austria, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Danmark, Estonia, Sweden, the UK, and Turkey, see acknowledgements) new and more detailed databases have been used. We are working on including new data also from the remaining countries, and thereby step by step abandoning the use of the reference locality system to improve accuracy.

This first version included all species which are covered by CLIMBER, thus missing some species which are only found in the Macaronesian islands, on Cyprus or in Ukraine. The current version also includes all species from Cyprus and Asian Turkey.

We currently still use the same time periods as in the printed atlas ( red dot until 1950, yellow dot for the period 1951-1980, and green dot after 1980), but we plan to introduce a system with more flexible time periods which allows to track more recent changes, range expansions or migration events.

We are looking forward to your feedback ( lepidiv@ufz.de ) and further collaboration.

Martin Wiemers, Alexander Harpke, Oliver Schweiger, Josef Settele