Cardinal - Argynnis pandora


Family: Nymphalidae.

Flight Time: May - July.

Size: 64-80mm

Altitude: 500-1500m (2600m in N Africa)


The Cardinal is a large fritillary which has only one species similar to it, namely the Silver-washed fritillary Argynnis paphia. The green flushed upperside, see right, is a quick and easy way to tell the difference.

My first sighting of this species was in Morocco, it settled in a tree which was just in range of the camera, unfortunately the local children that were following us around decided it would be better if I had the butterfly and started throwing stones at it!



Fact File

Similar Species Foodplants Habitat Distribution


Viola species.

Viola species

Woodland clearings.

Cardinal distribution


Early Stages




All pictures in these pages copyright to Simon Coombes. Permission must be sought and obtained for any use.