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UK Nature  > Butterflies  > Pararge aegeria

  • Female Speckled Wood
  • Close up of wing undersides

Scientific Name:   Pararge aegeria
Common Name:   Speckled Wood

Pararge aegeria, more commonly known as the Speckled Wood, is a common butterfly and familiar to many observers, especially in woodland where, as its name suggests, it is most often found.

With a wingspan of 4 - 4.5cm, it has brown wings with pale yellow spots, especially on forewings; forewing with one eye-spot, hindwing with three. In the female (pictured) the pattern of yellowish spots is more extensive than in the male and the underside of the hind wing marbled brown yellow.

Distributed throughout the UK, but decreasing in numbers the farther north you travel. Found in open deciduous woods, on the edges of woods, in clearings, and along forest rides. Prefers to remain in shade and half-shade and readily rests on the leaves of shrubs and herbaceous plants. They feed on nectar and the juices of overripe berries; also on excrement and flowing tree sap. The male will vigorously defend his territory against intruders.
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