© 2014 by Barbara Copperthwaite.

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Gatekeeper butterfly, Go Be Wild, Barbara Copperthwaite

Gatekeeper

 

Look for these lovely butterflies on the edges of deciduous woods and pine forests, or somewhere more open but with lots of hedgerows - Gatekeeprs are particularly fond of Brambles. There, from early July to late September, when they are out and about, you may see the male displaying on a leaf - and investigating any other butterflies, even of different species, which come into his territory.

Eggs are laid singley on blades of grass (another good reason to put off mowing!)

 

WILD CARD: The female is smaller than the male, with noticeably more intense colours.

 

Gatekeeper butterfly, Go Be Wild, Barbara Copperthwaite
Gatekeeper butterfly, Go Be Wild, Barbara Copperthwaite

The more vibrantly-coloured female, above, is also smaller than the male, pictured right protecting his territory by keeping lookout on a leaf.

Gatekeeper butterfly, Go Be Wild, Barbara Copperthwaite