Speckled Wood - Pararge aegeria

    Description

    The appearance of this butterfly changes from the north to the south, forming a "cline", where individuals in the north are dark brown with white spots, whilst those in more southerly locations are dark brown with orange spots.

    Photo ID?
    Habitat

    As its names suggests, this butterfly is primarily found in woodland but can be found anywhere there is sufficient scrub to provide the shaded conditions that this butterfly favours and this includes habitats such as gardens and hedgerows.

    When to see it

    April to October.

    Life History

    This species is unique among the butterflies of the British Isles in that it can over-winter in two stages, as both a larva and pupa. As a result, there is a mixed emergence with adult butterflies on the wing from April through to September, with a few adults being seen as early as March or as late as October, especially at southern sites. There are two or three generations, depending on location and weather conditions and adults of later generations are generally darker than those emerging earlier in the year. The larval food plants are grasses.

    UK Status

    This butterfly is found in self-contained colonies throughout the British Isles and is expanding its range.

    VC55 Status

    Common throughout Leicestershire & Rutland.

    Reference
    59.003 BF1614

    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    UK Map