Tag Archives: Meadow Brown

view of a fresh Meadow Brown resting with open wings showing the upper fore-wings

Meadow Brown. Photo: Harold Gillen

Harold photographed this lovely fresh Meadow Brown at Winspit, on 14/09/17.

This butterfly has a long season, from May-Oct, and on dull days is easily disturbed from its resting place deep in grass by walking nearby.

The food plant of the caterpillar is a wide variety of grasses, which goes towards making this species very successful in the UK and Europe.

View of two Red Admirals and a Meadow Brown nectaring on a buddleia

Meadow Brown (left) and Red Admiral . Photo: Harold Gillen

This striking photograph was taken at Sandford, Wareham on 02/09/2017.

Harold tells us that he had nine Red Admirals in his garden that day, and wondered if they were migrants or homegrown as he put it. Either is possible, so it is difficult to be sure which, but if the early Autumn weather is warm and sunny we can often see higher numbers feeding on Buddleia, Ivy flowers, and garden flowers such as Verbena .

Meadow Brown numbers are reducing now but can still be found in a variety of habitats on sunny days.

Ringlet and Small Heath mating

Two butterflies in mating pose hanging underneath a grass leaf

Ringlet (left) and Meadow Brown in mating pose. Photo: Jennifer Bower

Another pair of confused butterflies: perhaps the heat is getting to them! This time it’s a Ringlet (on the left) and a Meadow Brown trying to mate. Unfortunately they are wasting their time, as there will not be any offspring. Spotted by Jennifer on Hod Hill on 01/07/2017.

The red blobs on them are mites called trombidium breei. They do not seem to harm the butterfly. Some species of butterfly are more prone than others – ones that are often seen with red mites are Meadow Brown males; Marbled White; Common Blue and Small Skipper.


Mis-matched mating pair

Two butterflies of different species trying to mat

Meadow Brown and Small Tortoiseshell. Photo: Sue Anderson

A very unlikely mating couple, caught by Sue on a track near Haydon, close to Sherborne. She reports they were being ‘buzzed’ by another Meadow Brown.

The mating is not likely to produce offspring, but one can have fun considering the name of the new species if they did. The Meadowshell? The Tortbrown?

Gatekeepers on Southdown Ridge

Two Gatekeepers among grass and leaves

Gatekeepers. Photo: George McCabe

George tells us: “Went out along the gravel path over Southdown Ridge this morning which  runs along the side of the new relief road between the two land bridges, not only did l see another Gatekeeper but two together. This time l was ready, thankfully the dog did not think it was a game and get its head in the shot, in fact, l saw 4 in total  in the length of the path which is about 1/4 mile.”

The relief road is the one outside Weymouth and the photos were taken on 27/06/2017. We haven’t had many Gatekeepers reported to the website yet, but checking back, the first dates of sightings reported to the website have been: (from 2012 to 2017)  17 July. 11 July. 28 June. 24 June. 25 May. 13 June so it’s early days yet.


Gatekeeper at Lorton Meadows

Gatekeeper with open wings on a leaf

Gatekeeper. Photo: George McCabe

George was very lucky with this – he says: “Saw this Gatekeeper in Lorton Meadows. Tried to take a picture only to find the sim card was missing , returned a few hours later and to my surprise it was in the same area and I managed to snap this.” 26/06/2017