Pyronia tithonus   Gatekeeper or Hedge Brown

Pyronia tithonus upper Pyronia tithonus under female

The Gatekeeper or Hedge Brown feeds on various grasses like Festuca ssp and Poa ssp but at this site it flitted amongst the flowers of the bramble and often settled on bracken or bramble leaves. It is an agressive butterfly and was often seen chasing off Red Admirals, Ringlets, Large Whites and Meadow Browns.

The female on the right seems quite interested in the bramble flowers and wherever we saw flowering brambles we found Gatekeepers and Meadow Browns.

Pyronia tithonus large top view Pyronia tithonus large underside
Large Image top Large Image underside

LHS: Path from Mevagissey to Goran Haven, Cornwall 21st July 08 RHS: Frodsham marshes 28th July 08

Added on November 16th 2000, amended on February 1st 2005, updated 27th June 2008, and 28th July 2008

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