Tag Archives: dark green fritillary

Orange and Brown butterfly with open wings

Dark Green Fritillary. Photo: Brian Arnold

 

underside of a butterfly showing white pearls on a green and light orange base

Dark Green Fritillary Photo: Brian Arnold

Brian was at Godlingston Heath on 24/06/19 and found this lovely Dark Green Fritillary and tells us:

There was a very strong wind and the butterfly was trying to hide down in the grass. It refused to move or fly despite me moving bits of grass out of the way to get his photo.

Nothing would tempt him to open his wings, except letting it climb onto my finger, and when I put it back onto the grass he immediately shut his wings again. 

A lovely fresh specimen and good to be able to see the underside so clearly.

View of a Dark Green Fritillary showing the under hindwing markings

Dark Green Fritillary. Photo: Paul Swann

Paul sent us this photo of a Dark Green Fritillary which he saw at Badbury Rings in late June 2018.

The Dark Green Fritillary is the most widespread fritillary found in the British Isles and is a pleasure to see as it flies powerfully over its grassland habitats, frequently stopping to nectar on Thistles and Knapweed. It gets its name from the green hue found on the underside of the hindwings, which are peppered with large silver spots.

view of a Dark Green Fritillary nectaribng on a thistle showing uppersides of fore and -hind-wings

Dark Green Fritillary. Photo: Alison Copland

This Dark Green Fritillary was photographed at Ballard Down by Alison on 21/06/18.

The Dark Green Fritillary is the most widespread fritillary found in the British Isles and is a pleasure to see as it flies powerfully over its grassland habitats, frequently stopping to nectar on Thistles and Knapweed. It gets its name from the green hue found on the underside of the hindwings, which are peppered with large silver spots.

 

view of the upper fore and hind-wings of a Dark Green Fritillary

Dark Green Fritillary. Photo: Mark Pike

Mark spotted this Dark Green Fritillary at Badbury Rings on 6/06/18 .They only emerged a week or so ago in the UK and when the sun shines there should be good numbers to be found.

 

It favours open grassy flowery slopes, clearings in light woodland, and damp meadows, heaths and moors.

The caterpillar foodplants are Common Dog, Hairy and Marsh Violets and wild pansies.The caterpillar eats the eggshell on hatching and immediately enters hibernation in a curled up leaf or other piece of debris. The larva emerges in the spring and starts to feed on the tenderest new growth of the foodplant, either eating large chunks out of the leaf lobes, or eating the leaf entirely with the stem left standing. It is most active during sunny periods and can often be seen wandering across bare ground or short turf in search of the foodplant. The mature larva has a distinct colouring, being mostly black with a feint yellow band running down its back and a series of red spots running down each side. There are 5 moults in total.

 

 

view of a Dark Green Fritillary basking with wings open showing full pattern of upper fore-wings

Dark Green Fritillary. Photo: Mel Bray

view of Dark Green Fritillary with wings half open showing pattern of under hind-wing

Dark Green Fritillary. Photo: Mel Bray

Mel found the first Dark Green Fritillaries recorded in Dorset this year at Badbury Rings on 6/06/18.  He tells us:

I was up at Badbury Rings today and this fresh looking Dark Green Fritillary glowed out at me from amid the foliage. It was sunning itself and stayed still long enough for me to grab a couple of shots

What an apt description, it certainly does glow and it’s always exciting when you spot a species for the first time each year.It flies powerfully over its grassland habitats, frequently stopping to nectar on Thistles and Knapweed. It gets its name from the green hue found on the underside of the hindwings, which are peppered with large silver spots. This butterfly can be found throughout the British Isles, although it is less common in central and eastern England.

The Flight period for this species is early June- late August in one brood.

Dark Green Fritillary near Spyway Barn

Two butterflies mating, partly hidden in the greenery

Dark Green Fritillaries. Photo: Mary Dorey

Mary caught these Dark Green Fritillaries between Seacombe and Worth Matravers on 05/07/2017, noting that she actually saw three.

If you are unsure if a fritillary is a Dark Green or a Silver-washed, one thing to note is the habitat: these were seen in an area of fairly open countryside. Silver-washed are woodland butterflies.