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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Alberta Fritillary - Boloria alberta

Species of Concern
Native Species

Global Rank: G3
State Rank: S2S3

Agency Status

External Links

General Description
[From Ferris and Brown 1981, Scott 1986, Glassberg 2001, Guppy and Shepard 2001] Forewing length 2.0-2.3 cm. Adults appear melanic and greasy (males dingy orange, females dingy brownish and paler orange), forewing with ventral post-median spots very faint or absent but with small black marginal points at veins, ventral hindwing with gray smudges and median band suffused with brownish.

One flight, from early July to early August (Scott 1986, Guppy and Shepard 2001).

Diagnostic Characteristics
Combination of washed out appearance and underwing markings are distinctive among the fritillaries.

Species Range
Montana Range Range Descriptions


Range Comments
The Rocky Mountains of British Columbia and Alberta south to extreme northern Montana in Glacier and Flathead counties of Glacier National Park (Kohler 1980, Guppy and Shepard 2001); most recently (2005) extended south in Montana to Teton County (S. Kohler, personal communication). Locally rare (Glassberg 2001).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 1

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)


High elevation alpine fellfield and scree hillsides, rarely flats or hilltops (Scott 1986, Guppy and Shepard 2001). Above treeline in alpine habitat in Glacier National Park (Debinski 1993).

Food Habits
Larval food plants probably include alpine avens (Dryas octopetala), although oviposition on this plant documented only in captivity (Scott 1986, Guppy and Shepard 2001), and larvae yet to be observed feeding on this (or any) plant species. Adults feed on flower nectar (Scott 1986).

Reproductive Characteristics
Little information. Eggs laid on Dryas by females in captivity, and hatch in about 10 days. L1 instar hibernates, older larvae may hibernate a second winter; two years required for development from egg to adult. Males patrol all day near the presumptive larval host plant (Dryas), close to the ground on rocky hillsides, rarely on flats and hilltops (Scott 1986, Guppy and Shepard 2001).

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Citation for data on this website:
Alberta Fritillary — Boloria alberta.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from