Tag Archives: Small Skipper

Two butterflies on a pink flower - one white with black markings and the other brown and orange

Marbled White and Meadow Brown. Photo: Penny Hawes

Two brown butterflies resting on green vegetation

Small and Lulworth Skippers. Photo: Penny Hawes

Penny sent in these two photos that she took on a trip to Portland on 17/07/2021 telling us:

The Skippers were resting on the same stem at the Bill, (don’t ask me which Skippers they are) and the Marbled White and Meadow Brown were sharing a flower at Kingbarrow. There were probably thousands of Marbled Whites on Portland, but I only saw two Chalkhill Blues at Perryfields, usually a hotspot for them.

Editor’s Note:  The top Skipper in this photo is a female Small Skipper and the bottom one is a male Lulworth Skipper – my thanks to Brian Arnold for confirming these ID’s.

A golden brown butterfly perched on the top of a pink flower

Small Skipper. Photo: Shona Refoy

Shona told us that she just had to send in this photo of a female Small Skipper because of her proboscis!  The photo was taken at Ashington Meadow this morning, 21/07/2021 where Shona mentioned that she saw both Small and Essex Skippers.

A golden brown butterfly nectaring on a purple flower

Essex Skipper. Photo: Brian Arnold

A golden brown butterfly nectaring on a yellow flower

Small Skipper. Photo: Brian Arnold

Two photos from Brian taken on 02/07/2021 and sent in telling us:

We did the Durlston East transect today and found our first positively identified Essex Skipper since I started doing the transect 4 years ago. There were lots of Small Skippers, but I often try to take photos of their antennae to try and find an Essex. I have seen them elsewhere at Durlston, but never on a transect count before.

Essex Skippers have a black tip to the antennae when viewed from the side or beneath, whereas the underside of a Small Skipper antennae tip has an orange/brown tint. The male Essex has a sex brand which is shorter and straighter than a Small Skipper, and runs parallel to the leading edge of the forewing rather than at an angle.  

View of an orange butterfly with black and yellow markings resting on a green leaf

Comma. Photo: Mark Pike

A view of an orange and pale brown butterfly perched on a thistle

Small Skipper. Photo: Mark PIke 

Two photos from Mark taken yesterday afternoon, 30/06/2021 at Motcombe Meadows sent in telling us:

This rather tame and very fresh Comma seemed to take a liking to me! Twice it landed on me, once on my head and again on my arm and kept returning to almost the same branch time after time. The Small Skipper was also a very fresh looking one.

A brownish orange butterfly with some black markings resting on a green leaf

Small Skipper. Photo: Shona Refoy

An orange butterfly with black markings nectaring on a yellow flower

Dark Green Fritillary. Photo: Shona Refoy

Two photos from Shona sent in telling us:

I had just driven back from Norfolk (where I saw Swallowtails), when I went for a quick walk at Badbury Rings with my daughter this afternoon, 20/06/2021 and was delighted to see my first Small Skipper and my first Dark Green Fritillaries of the year – both of these butterflies are males.

View of two golden brown butterflies mating in green vegetation

Small Skippers. Photo: Shona Refoy

Two golden brown butterflies mating in green vegetation

Small Skippers. Photo: Shona Refoy

Two photos sent in by Shona with the following commentary:

I walked to Ashington Meadow today, 29/06/2020 on a very windy afternoon.  I was not really expecting to see many butterflies out and about but found there were many Skippers at the lower end of the Meadow; mostly Small, but I also saw three Essex males.

I spotted this pair of mating Small Skippers among the Scabious – they were quite acrobatic and moved around a lot, apart from being blown around by the wind!

View of a golden brown and orange butterfly

Essex Skipper. Photo: Mark Pike

View of a perching golden brown and orange butterfly

Small Skipper. Photo: Mark Pike

Two photos taken on 28/06/2020 at Motcombe Meadows which Mark tells us is a great place to see both Small & Essex Skippers flying together (although he says that Small are far more common there).  He sent these two images for comparison as he thought they clearly show the all important antennae identification differences.