This is a skipper of forest margins and clearings and woodland edges, particularly damp ones. The larvae feed on various grasses and the adults are on the wing from May to June. In the UK it is restricted to one small area around Fort William in western Scotland, where the larval foodplant is only one grass, Purple Moor-grass.
I'm not seeing this butterfly at home but at the edge of a forest not far from here. The first time I saw it the weather was warm and sunny and it was flitting about and not so easy to capture but I did succeed with a few. I can see that this is a female, the only difference to my eye is that the female has dark markings around the pale 'spots' on the underwing, whereas the male does not.
|Chequered Skipper (Carterocephalus palaemon) on an Ox-eye Daisy.|
|On Hawkbit again but showing more of the top side of the wings.|
I also found it another time quite by accident. This was one morning after rain the night before, and whilst it was intermittently sunny, it was still quite cool and damp in the forest. I had been looking at this wildflower which I didn't recognise, so was taking photos of it, both flowers and leaves, to try to ID it at home. I hadn't even realised I had captured the butterfly on the plant whilst I was taking photos of the foliage - can you imagine how I would have felt if I hadn't noticed the butterfly and then found it on my photos at home?! Luckily for me, I did eventually notice it!
|Pale Toadflax (Linaria repens).|
|A photo showing the leaves of the Pale Toadflax... and something else!|
|And another photo! With butterflies I start off further away then creep in closer; |
better to get distant photos than none at all.
|But it wasn't moving. I think it was cold and so I had a wonderful photo op here!|
|The best thing of all was that it wasn't difficult to get it onto my finger.|
|So we had a fun photo shoot.|
|Isn't it cute?!|