A Flora and Fauna of Symi

A personal guide to the wildlife of Symi and beyond

header photo


There are butterflies in the valley that is called "Petaloudes" on Rodos but this is a moth, Euplagia quadripunctaria rhodosensis, or a close relative of the Jersey tiger moth. Even at this late date in the summer the water still flows down the ravine and every shaded tree and rock is covered in moths.

Definitely worth a visit but sadly I only had my mobile phone to catch the images.

The Jersey Tiger, Euplagia quadripunctaria, is a day-flying moth of the family Arctiidae. The adult wingspan is 52–65 millimetres (2.0–2.6 in), and they fly from July to September, depending on the location. They tend to fly close to Eupatorium cannabinum, where they are hard to notice because of their camouflage. The larvae (caterpillars) are polyphagous, feeding from September to May on nettles (Urtica) and raspberries(Rubus), dandelion (Taraxacum), white deadnettle (Lamium), ground ivy (Glechoma), groundsel (Senecio), plantain (Plantago), borage (Borago), lettuce (Lactuca), and hemp-agrimony (Eupratoria). The insect overwinters as a small larva.

Large groups of adults of subspecies E. q. rhodosensis can be found on occasion aestivating (sheltering from the summer heat) in Petaloudes, on Rhodes, in a place that has become known as the 'Valley of the Butterflies'.

A good link to what you might expect to see is here.


Go Back