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I have been interested in nature for most of my life but since I retired I spend as much time as I can exploring the nature reserves and wildlife hotspots of my adopted home, Dorset in southern England. Whilst out I record what I see and take snaps where I can (I am no photographer!) and that forms the basis of my Nature of Dorset website. When I find something new I like to research it and write about it in my nature notes, it is how I learn and hopefully you might find my notes helpful as well!

This website is for the people of Dorset interested in wildlife and for people from elsewhere interested in the wildlife of Dorset!

18 June, 2010

Grizzled Skipper (Pyrgus malvae)

The Grizzled Skipper is a far from common species, it may be overlooked but I see it very occasionally. Dorset is one of its strongholds as it likes flowery downs and slopes and so the Purbeck Ridge and the sea cliff tops at places like Durslton and Portland Bill are good places to find them.

They are quite a small butterfly and tend to fly close to the ground preferring soil and rocks as resting places.

The have two broods here in the south. The first brood fly in May and June and the second brood briefly in September. They lay their eggs on Wild Strawberry where possible but later in the season and in September when there is no Wild Strawberry they use other related plants like Creeping Cinquefoil, Silverweed, Bramble and Wild Raspberry, all members of the Rose family.

The Grizzled Skipper is one of the few butterflies that overwinters as a hibernating pupae.