Heath Fritillary (Melitaea athalia)

formerly Mellicta athalia

Nationally very rare and restricted in its distribution, the Somerset population, which is confined to a handful of sheltered heathland valleys on Exmoor, is of great importance. Here the caterpillars feed on Common Cow-wheat though they also use a range of other species at times. The sexes are similar, body shape being the easiest distinction.


Images L-R: male; female; underside


Flight period: late May to July and sometimes a few in August


Because of their scarcity, no distribution map is given.