Ophrys insectifera

Fly orchid; Ophrys mouche; Fliegenragwurz; Pecchie

Across Europe from Ireland eastwards as far as Rumania and Russia, and from northern Italy and northern parts of former Yugoslavia as far north as Sweden, Norway and Finland.

A slender plant up to 60 cm in height, found in fens, grasslands, woodlands, scrub and limestone pavement; always on calcareous substrates. The labellum is 3-lobed, velvety, brownish, the central lobe much the largest and itself notched or lobed, with a central blue or violet speculum. Insect-pollinated.

Photograph: the Burren, W Ireland, 2000.
© Alan Hill

Click photograph for larger image.

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© National Museums and Galleries of Northern Ireland, 2004