The Silver-washed Fritillary (Argynnis paphia)
This is one of our most conspicuous broad-leaved woodland butterflies. It has a marked preference for oak trees. However it will be found on suitable nectar rich plants in grasslands adjacent to woods.
The adult does not overwinter and is only seen on the wing from June to September. The peak flight period being July and August. The eggs are laid in cool damp areas such as north facing tree stumps close to the Common Dog-violet plants which are the caterpillars source of food. This butterfly therefore requires glades, woodland rides and all important coppiced areas to thrive. The larvae survive the winter and pupate in June. The adult obtains nectar from such plants as Hemp Agrimony, thistles and brambles.
They have a wingspan of 70-80mm. They are pale orange with an intricate pattern of black lines and spots on the upper wings. The male has four, broad, black stripes across the forewing.