Tuesday, 2 August 2016


Affectionately known as the Hedge Brown, the Gatekeeper is one of England's and Wales' most numerous butterflies, but only found on the south coast, and with a few other scattered sites in Southern Ireland. They fly from early July until late August, they are single brooded. Their favourite flowers are Brambles and Ragwort and Thistles etc. for nectar and love basking in the sun with their wings fully opened.

The males are smaller than the females and have large sex brands on the upper side of each forewing [absent in the female].

Male Gatekeeper showing the two large sex brand on the top of each forewing

Female gatekeeper, larger than the males with no sex brands

The undersides are similar between the sexes but, not quite the same and it is possible to tell the difference between the males and females by the wing undersides if you look closely.

Male Gatekeeper showing the wing undersides

Female Gatekeeper showing her wing undersides, which are sightly different to that of the males

Gatekeepers roost just about anywhere, in trees, shrubs/flowers and down in the grass.

Female Gatekeeper Roosting on Ragwort one of its favourite flowers for feeding on

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