John and Gerry's    Orchids of Britain and Europe
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Ophrys apulica

This species was first described by Danesch and Danesch from Lecce, Italy in 1970. Its name means "from  Puglia" and O. apulica is indeed endemic to this region of southern Italy where it's fairly widespread and not at all uncommon.

Its range brings it into contact with several other fuciflorids (O. fuciflora, O. celiensis, O. oxyrrhnchos and O. parvimaculata) but is usually quite easily distinguished from these species by virtue of its significantly greater flower size and often strongly recurved, scolopaxoid lip. This latter feature can sometimes be very pronounced and produce a flower that is strongly reminiscent of its more northerly relative O. dinarica. This similarity becomes even more striking when, as in pictures 5 and 10, the basal field and stigmatic cavity are vertically divided into two oval segments.

O. apulica also resembles species found in other areas of Europe and notably O. pharia of Hvar Island, Croatia and O. episcopalis from the Aegean. The former species, despite being in a different taxonomic grouping (O. heldreichii),  shows a great morphological affinity to O. apulica and their precise relationship would benefit from further research.

This is not a  particularly variable orchid  but  as  can  be  seen from the illustrations, the degree of lip  constriction and recurvature can vary, with  some plants tending towards an O. fuciflora , widely flared appearance (photo 4)  whilst others are tightly pinched back resembling a large flowered member of the O. scolopax group (photo 1). The petals are invariably pink although as can be seen from photo 7,  the sepals can occasionally be either very pale or rarely white.