Vorige Art/previous species (Left arrowball from Animation City 1991)   Western
Ophrys exaltata subsp. arachnitiformis   Nächste Art/next species (Right arrowball from Animation City 1991)

Very early flowering Ophrys, which for many years have been called arachnitiformis, are found between northeastern Spain and western Liguria, however mainly along the French Mediterranean coast. According to the investigations of PAULUS and GACK (1999) in Jour.Eur.Orch.31(2) the orchids are pollinated by the bee Colletes cunicularius.

In the last years there were again and again attempts, to separate the western arachnitiformis, which has usually a green perigon, from the eastern arachnitiformis with white to pink perianth. The western partial population is distributed from northeastern Spain to over the Rhone in France, as well as along the Rhone valley almost up to Lyon, few populations have also been found near the French Atlantic coast. These plants with green perigon have been described in 2002 by Remy SOUCHE (Romeig SOCA) and others as Ophrys exaltata subsp. marzuola, and by Gil SCAPPATICCI as Ophrys arachnitiformis subsp. occidentalis, and thus separated from the eastern arachnitiformis s.str. Another name is Ophrys gallica by LOOKEN 2000. The question is whether one of these solutions can satisfy, which only would be the case, if the transitions were not flowing. But this is the case, and Scappaticci has described these frequently occurring intermediates between western and eastern arachnitiformis already as hybrids.

In 2006 in Natural. belges 87 (Orchid. 19): 228-251 Devillers and Devillers-Terschuren stated according to old herbarium specimens that Ophrys passionis SENNEN is the correct name for the archnitiformis s.l. populations in lowlands of Languedoc and Catalogne. They separate the corresponding orchids from Rhone valley as Ophrys occidentalis, and call those from the coast of the Provence Ophrys arachnitiformis. The species similar to Ophrys garganica, which up to then had been named Ophrys passionis, was re-described with the new name Ophrys caloptera.


Western Ophrys exaltata subsp. arachnitiformis
E Catalunya Solsona 31.3.01

Western Ophrys exaltata subsp. arachnitiformis
E Catalunya L'Escala 9.4.04

Western Ophrys exaltata subsp. arachnitiformis
F Toreilles 10.3.01

 

Western Ophrys exaltata subsp. arachnitiformis
F Frontignan 19.3.99

Western Ophrys exaltata subsp. arachnitiformis
left:   F Chanas 9.3.00
right: F Charbieux 9.3.00

  
 
left arrowball, from Animation City 1991       Start page       Contents       right arrowball, from Animation City 1991 Rev: 20-Apr-2004

 
Copyright: Use of the images and texts only with author's written permission.