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FIRST RECORD OF Chersotis rectangula ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775) IN CROATIA WITH NEW DATA FOR Chersotis Multangula (Hübner, 1803) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae)
PRVI NALAZ Chersotis rectangula ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775) ZA HRVATSKU I NOVI PODACI O Chersotis Multangula (Hübner, 1803) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae)
Toni KOREN, Stanislav GOMBOC
During the moth survey of the hills Straninjščica and Ivanščica in the Krapina-Zagorje County in Croatia in 2014, many interesting moth species were recorded. Among them, the noctuid Chersotis rectangula ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775), new for Croatian fauna. Three specimens of Ch. rectangula were collected on the UV light traps at the top of Ivanščica Mt., on 8 June 2014. This is the sixth species of the genus Chersotis occurring in Croatia. Other species are Ch. multangula (Hübner, 1803), Ch. margaritacea (Villers, 1789), Ch. elegans (Eversmann, 1837), Ch. fimbriola (Esper, 1803) and Ch. cuprea (Denis & Schiffermüller, 1775). Aside from Ch. rectangula, Ch. multangula was also recorded in the same season on Straninščica and Ivanščica Mts., which is the north-easternmost occurrence of this species for the country.
KEY WORDS: distribution, fauna, noctuids, Chersotis, Ivanščica, Strahinjščica
Of the most numerous moth families in Croatia (e.g. Erebiidae, Crambidae, Geometridae, Noctuidae, Pyralidae, Tortricidae), the Noctuidae are by far the best studied family. This is mostly due to several larger previous surveys in various parts of Croatia: Krk Island (Habeler 2003), Kupa River (Mladinov 1977), Gorski Kotar (Kučinić et al. 1993), north-western Croatia (Kučinić & Bregović 1996), Podravina (Kranjčev 1984), Kopački Rit (Vignjević et al. 2010), reviews of the data from museum collections (Mladinov 1958; Kučinić & Hrašovec 1999), as well as contributions of several new species records for the country (Kučinić & Perović 1997; Kučinić et al. 1998; Kučinić & Lorković 1999). Except these contributions, the noctuid fauna of Croatia remains poorly known, since most of the studies were concentrated on a very small area and were not systematic surveys. The northern part of the country is the least studied region.
The genus Chersotis Boisduval, 1840 consists of 76 species, of which 20 can be found in Europe (Fibiger & Hacker 1990; Fibiger 1993; Witt & Ronkay 2011; Fibiger & Skule 2013; Varga et al 2013). They are usually connected to

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mountainous or meso-montane xerothermophilic habitats, and are generally rare and local except for some high mountain species. They hibernate mostly as larvae. The food plants include various species from the genera Vicia, Trifolium, Plantago, Galium, Asperula, Cirsium etc. (Kučinić & Lorković 1999). This is one of the few genera for which an overview of known species and data was given for Croatia (Kučinić & Lorković 1998). According to the authors, four species of this genus have been recorded for the Croatian fauna: Chersotis multangula (Hübner, 1803), Chersotis margaritacea (Villers, 1789), Chersotis elegans (Eversmann, 1843) and Chersotis cuprea (Denis & Schiffermüller, 1775) (Kučinić & Lorković 1998). An additional species record of Chersotis fimbriola (Esper 1803) is cited in the Fauna Europaea database (Fibiger & Skule 2013), increasing the number of the known species up to five. However, this species needs to be confirmed either in the literature or in the museum collections. Another Chersotis species, Ch. laeta leonhardi Rebel, 1904 has the type-locality in the vicinity of Croatia (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Maklen-Pass at Korićna and Kalinovik (Hacker, Varga 1990)) and can also be expected in Croatia.
Only one or a few records exist for each Chersotis species in Croatia, so their distribution in the country is mostly unknown. Additionally, most records are citations from older literature, and need confirmation. In this contribution we give the first record of Chersotis rectangula ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775) and additional data for Chersotis multangula (Hübner, 1803) from NW Croatia.
Material and methods
Materijali i metode            
Specimens of Ch. rectangula and Ch. multangula were collected during the survey of Ivanščica and Strahinjščica Mts. in 2014 (Table 1, Fig. 1). Moths were attracted by UV light traps. The observed habitats mostly consist of a beech forest with rich forest road edge vegetation and partly mixed beach-spruce forest at higher altitudes on calcareous rock. Aside from the forest road, the whole nearby and surrounding area is covered with continental deciduous forest. The identification is based on the author’s collections and was confirmed by literature for the genus Chersotis (Fibiger, 1993). Two specimens are stored in the private collection of Toni Koren in Pazin. All records and identifications were made by Stanislav Gomboc and Toni Koren.
The presence of the Chersotis genus in Croatia was checked in Croatian and foreign entomological collections by Kučinić & Lorković (1998), where the presence of 4 species was confirmed for Croatia. We also checked all the available literature where we could not find any additional data for Ch. rectangula for Croatia (e.g. Abafi-Ainger 1910; Abafi-Ainger et al. 1896; Bartol et al. 1964; Bohatch 1891; Burgermeister 1964; Galvagni 1902, 1909, 1934; Habeler 2003; Koča 1901; Kranjčev 1985; Kučinić 1992; Kučinić & Lorković 1998; Mann 1867; Mladinov & Kučinić 1993; Schawerda 1921; Stauder 1925).
Results and discussion
Rezultati i rasprava
Ch. rectangula is the type species of the genus Chersotis. It has a wingspan of 29-37 mm, grey and brown wings with inconspicuous markings (Fig. 2). This is a Ponto-Mediterranean species, which inhabits the southern part of central Europe: Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria and Hungary. Its distribution in Europe is discontinuous, being connected to the larger mountain ranges, where it is usually rare and local.
This xero-montane species inhabits bushy habitats, mainly in the subalpine zone, but also can be found in rocky grassland at lower altitudes between 600 and 2400 meters above sea level (Dufay 1971). Adults fly from late June to mid-September, and are attracted to light and bait traps (Fibiger 1990, 1997). Larvae are polyphagous and feed on different herbaceous plants like Melilotus spp. and Vicia spp. (Nowacki 2009). As three specimens were recorded, we may presume that this species has a population in the area, and the specimens do not represent migrating or vagrant

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individuals from other localities. Ivanščica Mt. is the highest mountain in north-western Croatia, and probably represents the only suitable habitat for this species in the region. Possibly, the species may occur on the nearby Strahinjščica Mt., which is not as high (the highest peak is Strahinjščica, at 847 m a.s.l.). None of the two mentioned mountains has been surveyed in the past, and additional species records are to be expected. It is also possible that these species could be found on some other poorly surveyed mountains in Croatia, especially throughout Gorski Kotar or Mt. Velebit.
The presence of Ch. rectangula in Croatia was expected since the species is known from the neighbouring regions (Slovenia, Hungary and Bosnia and Herzegovina (Fibiger & Skule 2013).
Besides Ch. rectangula, on the same locality and date we recorded another congeneric species, Ch. multangula (Fig. 3). Another two records of this species were made on the

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southern slopes of Strahinjščica (Table 1). Until now, this species has been recorded only at a few localities in Croatia: Josipdol (Mann 1867), Bosiljevo and Biokovo Mt. (Kučinić & Lorković 1998). Our records from Ivanščica and Strahinjščica Mts. represent the most northern record in Croatia, and the first record in NW Croatia whatsoever.
Records of these two species of genus Chersotis shows that the noctuid fauna of Croatia is still not surveyed enough and new and interesting findings may be expected. No checklist of the „former” Noctuidae family of Croatia exists, but according to the latest data, and our new record, the noctuid fauna (including former members, now in the family Erebiidae) numbers about 586 species in Croatia (Kučinić 1997; Kučinić & Lorković 1998; Kučinić et al. 1998; Koren & Lauš 2011). Also, a lot of the noctuid species records for Croatia are based on old literature data, and need to be confirmed in the future.
This survey was done within the project „Research of moth fauna in the ecological network Natura 2000 Strahinjščica and Ivanščica, Krapina-Zagorje county” financed by the Public institution for the management of protected areas in Krapina-Zagorje county. We are grateful to Petra Šemnički, Dijana Hršak and Ana Štih for their help and company during the field trips.
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Tijekom istraživanja planina Strahinjščice i Ivanščice u Krapinsko-zagorskoj Županiji, zabilježene su mnoge zanimljive vrste noćnih leptira. Među njima, sovica Chersotis rectangula ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775) nova je vrsta za faunu Hrvatske. Primjerci vrste Ch. rectangula sakupljeni su 8. lipnja 2014. na UV svjetlosnim zamkama na vrhu Ivanščice. Ova ksero-montana sovica nastanjuje grmovita staništa, uglavnom u subalpskoj zoni, no znana je i s kamenitih travnjaka na visinama između 600 i 2400 metara. Gusjenice ove vrste hrane se različitim zeljastim biljkama poput Melilotus spp. i Vicia spp. Kako smo na istraživanome području zabilježili tri primjerka, možemo poretpostaviti da na Ivanščici uistinu postoji populacija ove vrste, a zabilježeni primjerci ne predstavljaju migratorne ili dolutale jedinke. Ivanščica je najviša planina u sjeverozapadnoj Hrvatskoj i vjerojatno jedino pogodno stanište za ovu vrstu u regiji. Dodatni nalazi ove sovice mogu se očekivati u brdovitim predjelima Gorskog Kotara i Velebita. Ovo je šesta zabilježena vrsta roda Chersotis u Hrvatskoj. Ostale vrste su Ch. multangula (Hübner, 1803), Ch. margaritacea (Villers, 1789), Ch. elegans (Eversmann, 1837), Ch. fimbriola (Esper 1803) i Ch. cuprea (Denis & Schiffermüller, 1775). Na Strahinjščici i Ivanščici zabilježili smo i drugu rijetku vrstu ovog roda, Ch. multangula, što predstavlja najsjeverniji nalaz ove vrste u Hrvatskoj.
KLJUČNE RIJEČI: distribucija, fauna, sovice, Chersotis, Strahinjščica, Ivanščica