Vanessa cardui


  • Karkur Talh (Jebel Uweinat, following rains), November 1998
  • North-East Gilf Kebir (in micro-oasis NE of 'The Gap'), October 2002
  • Jebel Arkenu (at spring), October 2003
  • Karkur Talh & Wadi Handal (Jebel Uweinat, following rains), October 2006
  • Wadi Handal (Jebel Uweinat), October 2007
  • North-eastern Plateau (Jebel Uweinat, following rains), October 2007
  • Hassanein Plateau (Jebel Uweinat, following rains), numerous adults and one caterpillarOctober 2007
  • Wadi Wahesh (Jebel Uweinat, following rains), October 2007
  • Karkur Murr (Jebel Uweinat, at Ain Murr spring), November 2009
  • Karkur Ibrahim (Jebel Uweinat, at Ain Duarmé spring), November 2010

    When we first visited Jebel Uweinat in October 1998, just a few weeks after the 1998 rains, the valley was swarming with numerous painted lady butterflies. A few individuals were noted at a mini-oasis in the NE Gilf Kebir in 2002, and several at the well at jebel Arkenu in 2003, licking the salt crust on the ground near the water. Strangely, none were noted on fresh vegetation at Jebel Uweinat immediately following the rains of 2005, however many were seen one year later on remnant rain vegetation in both Karkur Talh and Wadi Handal, and another year later in Wadi Handal.

    In October 2007 several individuals were noted again in Wadi Handal (on still green remnant vegetation of the 2005 rains). In the same year rain fell on the higher areas of the mountain, numerous individuals were noted on green vegetation adjacent to water filled gueltas throughout the rain affected areas. A single caterpillar of the species was noted crawling on the sand on the Hassanein plateau near green vegetation.

    Single indivuduals were noted at the springs of Ain Murr and Ain Duarmé in November 2009 and November 2010 respectively.

    There is a clear seasonality of the observations, all were made during late autumn expeditions to the central Libyan Desert, no sightings were made in the spring. All were made either at permanent water sources, or on fresh green vegetation following locally abundant rains. There is evidence of local breeding at Jebel Uweinat following the substantial rains of 2007.

    Karkur Talh
    26th October, 1998
    (approx. 10am)

      NE Gilf Kebir
    2nd November, 2002
    (approx. 2pm)

      Jebel Arkenu
    26th October, 2003
    (approx. 9am)

    Wadi handal (Jebel Uweinat)
    20th October, 2006 (approx. 4pm)

      Wadi handal (Jebel Uweinat)
    23rd October, 2007 (approx. 6pm)

    North-western Plateau (Jebel Uweinat), on flowering Ochradenus baccatus adjacent to a small water filled guelta
    27th October, 2007 (approx. 10am)

    Hassanein Plateau (Jebel Uweinat), on flowering Ochradenus baccatus adjacent to large water filled guelta
    28th October, 2007 (approx. 8am)

    Hassanein Plateau (Jebel Uweinat)
    28th October, 2007 (approx. 11am)

      Wadi Wahesh
    at large guelta
    30th October, 2007 (approx. 2pm)

    Ain Murr (Karkur Murr, Jebel Uweinat),
    14th November, 2009 (approx. 3pm)

      Ain Duarmé (Karkur Ibrahim, Jebel Uweinat),
    18th November, 2010 (approx. 5pm)