Fritillaries and Metalmarks

A guide to butterfly species commonly found in Dorset

Dark Green Fritillary

Argynnis aglaja

Dark Green Fritillary
When to see:

Mid June to End August.
Peak: July to Mid-August

Habitat:

Downland

Where to see:

Melbury Down, Ballard Down, Badbury Rings, Durlston CP East, Durlston CP West

Foodplants:

Dog and Hairy Violet

Behaviour:

Patrol

Atlas: Distribution map & population trends

 

Marsh Fritillary

Eurodryas aurinia

Marsh Fritillary
When to see:

Early May to Mid July.
Peak: June

Habitat:

Meadows, rough ground, downland

Where to see:

Hod Hill, Lydlinch Common, Cerne Abbas, Lankham Bottom, Clubmens Down, Southfield Hogcliffe

Foodplants:

Devilsbit Scabious

Behaviour:

Patrol

Atlas: Distribution map & population trends

 

Pearl-bordered Fritillary

Boloria euphrosyne

When to see:

May and June.
Peak: Mid May to Mid June

Habitat:

Coppice Woodland rides, commons

Where to see:

Now sadly believed to be extinct in Dorset; previously found at Piddles Wood and Stubhampton Bottom

Foodplants:

Dog Violet

Behaviour:

Patrol

Atlas: Distribution map & population trends

 

Silver-washed Fritillary

Argynnis paphia

Silver-washed Fritillary
When to see:

End June to End August.
Peak: Mid July to Late August

Habitat:

Woodland

Where to see:

Deadmoor Common, Duncliffe Wood, Fifehead Wood, Lydlinch Common, Piddles Wood, Stubhampton Bottom, Oaker's Wood, Studland, Brackett's Coppice, Powerstock Railway, Avon Heath CP North, Garston Wood

Foodplants:

Dog Violet

Behaviour:

Patrol

Comments:

The Green form, valezina, is also found frequently in Dorset:

Atlas: Distribution map & population trends

 

Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary

Boloria selene

Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary
When to see:

End May to Early July.
Peak: June

Habitat:

Coppice woodland rides, commons

Where to see:

Bindon Hill, Stonebarrow Down

Foodplants:

Dog Violet

Behaviour:

Patrol

Atlas: Distribution map & population trends

 

Duke of Burgundy

Hamearis lucina

Duke of Burgundy, top wingsDuke of Burgundy underwingDuke of Burgundy light aberrationDuke of Burgundy dark aberration

Photos clockwise from top left: Adrian Reid; Chirs Parker; Brian Arnold; John Woodruffe.

The top two photos are 'normal' Dukes. The bottom two are abberations, the left being lighter and the right being darker than the norm.

Identification:

These butterflies are small, with a wingspan of only 30mm (1.25")

When to see:

Early May to End June.
Peak: Mid-May to Mid-June

Habitat:

Downland, woodland rides/clearings

Where to see:

Cerne Abbas, Giant Hill (National Trust DT2 7AL)

Foodplants:

Cowslips, Primroses

Behaviour:

Perch

Atlas: Distribution map & population trends