Submitted by AJ Cann on Sat, 07/05/2022 - 09:30

Two of our most threatened butterflies need your help. More...

We are into the flight season for two small, subtle, beautiful butterflies. Despite its name, a freshly emerged Dingy Skipper (Erynnis tages) reveals a subtle pattern of browns and greys that is quite beautiful. Although similar at first sight, closer inspection of the Grizzled Skipper (Pyrgus malvae) reveals a distinctive black and white pattern on the wings, from which this species gets its name. 

Both species occur in small, local colonies of less than 100 adults, often far fewer. They do not migrate and remain site-loyal for generations. Both are uncommon in Leicestershire and Rutland and their isolated colonies are mainly in post-industrial sites such as disused quarries and railway lines. If a colony is lost, the entire population experiences a major reverse. NatureSpot is asking for your help in locating the homes of these increasingly rare species so they can be monitored and protected. Alternately, you may wish to to see if you can discover new sites where they have not previously been recorded. Any site where the foodplants are abundant (see the species pages) is worth a visit on a sunny day in the next couple of months.

Please submit your photos of these threatened species and play your part in helping them cling on in Leicestershire and Rutland.