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FujiFilm S1 Pro. 1/350 F566 Sigma 105mm Macro lens. 22/05/2005.

Marsh Fritillary Butterfly (Euphydryas Aurinia)

The Chequered pattern on the upper-sides of the wings makes this a very colourful fritillary, they are slow flyers and as their name suggests they prefer marshy areas. The butterfly above was photographed over marshes at a local nature reserve in Hampshire, UK. 22/05/2005

The species has declined in the wild over the years through loss of habitat as meadow homes are drained or ploughed up, which affects colonies that breed in the same area every.
The caterpillars also suffered from parasitic wasps and adverse weather conditions.  There is one generation a year, the caterpillar hibernates through the winter and wakes up in the spring feeding on  Devil’s Bit Scabious, Plantain and Honeysuckle. Butterflies emerge from May to early July.