Orange-tip butterfly

Orange-tip butterfly (male)

Although this photograph shows a male Orange-tip butterfly on a Lesser Periwinkle the insect is common throughout the British countryside and has been seen on Bepton Down in the spring of 2016.

The males emerge slightly before the females in early April.  By early July very few remain as there is only one brood and the straw-coloured chrysalis remains among vegetation for ten to eleven months.  The eggs are laid between the end of April and the end of June and turn bright orange before hatching after a week.  The caterpillar feeds on developing seed pods before turning into a chrysalis after about 25 days.