Species: Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria tircis)

Family: Fritillaries, Nymphalids and Browns (NYMPHALIDAE)

Category: Butterflies & Moths

Location: NW

A. Butterflies & Moths

B. Fritillaries, Nymphalids and Browns (NYMPHALIDAE)

This is a large family containing many of our most colourful and familiar butterflies. Many are strong fliers, with a flapping flight interspersed with glides and swoops. The Fritillaries are predominantly orange with dark markings, and the Browns largely brown, but the Nymphalids have a range of colours.

C. Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria tircis)

This is the most frequently seen butterfly in the cemetery. It is tolerant of shade and has adapted well to the recent climate changes in the UK. The males are territorial, and a pair of rival males may often be seen spiralling round one another. They frequently feed on aphid honeydew in the tree canopies. Uniquely amongst our butterflies, this species can overwinter either as a caterpillar or chrysalis, giving rise to three overlapping broods, appearing first in late March and continuing to emerge until mid-October. The eggs are laid on grasses, normally False Brome, Cock's Foot, or Yorkshire-fog, all three of which are common in the cemetery. The caterpillars are green with yellow stripes along the sides.

Images

Speckled Wood

Speckled Wood

Speckled Wood

Speckled Wood

Speckled Wood

Speckled Wood