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Cinnabar moth; Polilla cinabrio

Tyria jacobaeae


This moth is named after the red mineral cinnabar (mercury sulphide, HgS) because of the red patches on its predominantly black wings. Cinnabar moth is about 20mm long and has a wingspan of 32–42 mm. It is a day-flying moth. Like many other brightly coloured moths, it is toxic; the larvae use Senecio plants as foodplants and extract the powerful toxic cyanide and assimilate it, becoming toxic themselves. The bright colours of both the larvae and the moths act as warning signs, so they are seldom eaten by predators. The cinnabar caterpillars, due to lack of food, can turn cannibalistic.


Spotted in mountain heathland, with dispersed pine trees. Parque Nacional de Sierra de Guadarrama


Camera Model: NIKON D300. Exposure Time: 1/250 sec.; f/8; ISO Speed Rating: 800. Exposure Bias: 0 EV. Focal Length: 300.0 mm. No Flash fired

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arlanda 3 years ago

Of course Snorre, you are welcome to use my photos as far as you cite its origin.

Snorre 3 years ago

Great documentation arlanda! Would it be possible for me to use some of your photos for a non profit informational flyer, at a nature park in Norway, where the cinnebar moth is a redlisted species?

arlanda 6 years ago

Thanks Leuba

Leuba Ridgway
Leuba Ridgway 6 years ago

Beautiful - great spotting arlanda !

arlanda 6 years ago

Thanks Kathleen


arlanda 6 years ago

Gracias Marta

The MnMs
The MnMs 6 years ago


Spotted by

Comunidad de Madrid, Spain

Spotted on Jun 5, 2015
Submitted on Jul 15, 2015


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