Red Admiral Vanessa atalanta

 

A common migratory visitor, breeding here on arrival and with the successor generations migrating south in autumn. Just a few may hibernate or develop in early spring from overwintering caterpillars; as a result they may be seen in gardens on warm days as late as November and as early as February. Stinging nettles are the caterpillar food plant and the adults feed at a wide range of wild and garden flowers. 

 

Images L-R: Adult (sexes are similar); adult nectaring; caterpillar on nettle leaf 

Flight Period: Normally April – November but may be found flying at any time of the year