Purple Hairstreak - Favonius quercus
The Purple Hairstreak is our commonest Hairstreak but is not often noticed. Males have a purple upper wings whereas females have just a purple patch. The underwings are similar in both sexes, being lilac-brown crossed by a white 'hair-streak' and with an orange eye-spot next to a small tail streamer.
Found around oak trees. It is often difficult to locate, due to its habit of flying in the tree canopy; however, the adults are occasionally seen basking at lower levels, on various small trees, shrubs and bracken.
Late June to early September
The adults feed on honeydew in the tree canopy and the larvae feed on oak buds.
This butterfly is found across southern England and Wales, with scattered colonies further north
Fairly common but under-recorded.
Leicestershire & Rutland Map
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Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015