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UK Nature  > Butterflies  > Argynnis paphia

Scientific Name:   Argynnis paphia
Common Name:   Silver-washed Fritillary

Argynnis paphia, more commonly known as the Silver-washed Fritillary, has a wingspan of 5.6 - 6.5 cm. The male is dark orange with black spots and streaks, the female usually a paler orange and lacking the forewing black streaks of scent scales present on the male. The underside of the wings is mainly olive-green in ground colour with silvery bands on the hind wings.

Found throughout most of the UK, but more common the further south you travel. It is mainly a butterfly of woodland; it can be coniferous, but more likely to be mature deciduous woodland, especially oaks. It has the one brood and seen usually late June to mid-September. Feeds at flowers, especially thistles, bramble and other composite flowers.

The male carries out a complicated mating display during which the antennae of the female come into contact with the scent-scales on his forewings; this special scent induces the female to mate; eggs are laid singly on tree tree trunks close to the caterpillar's food plants.
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