Steven Cheshire's British Butterflies
British Butterflies: Species: European Butterflies
The species listed here excludes those species on the British list which may also occur elsewhere in Europe. This is not intended to be a full European list. It just provides information about species we have encountered during our trips to Europe. This is very much 'work in progress' so information may be missing for these species accounts.
Family Hesperiidae (The Skippers)
The butterflies of the Hesperiidae family are commonly as "skippers" because of their rapid flight.
Click for futher details about the Marbled Skipper. Marbled Skipper
Carcharodus lavatherae
Click for futher details about the Red Underwing Skipper. Red Underwing Skipper
Spialia sertorius
Click for futher details about the Rosy Grizzled Skipper. Rosy Grizzled Skipper
Pyrgus onopordi
Click for futher details about the Safflower Skipper. Safflower Skipper
Pyrgus carthami
Family Lycaenidae (The Blues, Coppers, Hairstreaks & Dukes)
The Lycaenidae family is a large group of small butterflies. They are some of our most beautiful yet most overlooked butterflies.
Click for futher details about the African Grass Blue. African Grass Blue
Zizeeria knysna
Click for futher details about the Black-eyed Blue. Black-eyed Blue
Glaucopsyche melanops
Click for futher details about the Blue Spot Hairstreak. Blue Spot Hairstreak
Satyrium spini
Click for futher details about the Common Tiger Blue. Common Tiger Blue
Tarucus theophrastus
Click for futher details about the False Ilex Hairstreak. False Ilex Hairstreak
Satyrium esculi
Click for futher details about the Green Underside Blue. Green Underside Blue
Glaucopsyche alexis
Click for futher details about the Ilex Hairstreak. Ilex Hairstreak
Satyrium ilicis
Click for futher details about the Lang's Short Tailed Blue. Lang's Short Tailed Blue
Leptotes pirithous
Click for futher details about the Panoptes Blue. Panoptes Blue
Pseudophilotes panoptes
Click for futher details about the Purple-edged Copper. Purple-edged Copper
Lycaena hippothoe
Click for futher details about the Purple-Shot Copper. Purple-Shot Copper
Lycaena alciphron
Click for futher details about the Spanish Argus. Spanish Argus
Aricia morronensis
Click for futher details about the Spanish Purple Hairstreak. Spanish Purple Hairstreak
Laeosopis roboris
Family Nymphalidae (The Fritillaries, Emperors, Admirals and Browns)
The butterflies of the Nymphalidae family are often referred to as the 'brush-foots' because of the non-functional pair of front legs which are reduced in size and covered with hair-like scales. These forelegs are often tucked under the body of the butterfly. The caterpillars tend to be covered in spines or have other protrusions such as horns on the head or tail. The pupae are angular in shape and are jewel like in appearance with shiny metallic gold or silver spots.

An exception to the above rules are members of the sub-family Satyrinae (The Browns and Ringlets), whose caterpillars feed on grasses. The caterpillars also have pointed projections at the end of the body. It should be noted that the Marbled White dispite its appearance is a member of this sub-family, its behaviour and life-cycle being similar to other Browns.
Click for futher details about the False Heath Fritillary. False Heath Fritillary
Melitaea diamina
Click for futher details about the Knapweed Fritillary. Knapweed Fritillary
Melitaea phoebe
Click for futher details about the Marbled Fritillary. Marbled Fritillary
Brenthis daphne
Click for futher details about the Meadow Fritillary. Meadow Fritillary
Mellicta parthenoides
Click for futher details about the Nettle-tree Butterfly. Nettle-tree Butterfly
Libythea celtis
Click for futher details about the Pearly Heath. Pearly Heath
Coenonympha arcania
Click for futher details about the Provencal Fritillary. Provencal Fritillary
Mellicta deione
Click for futher details about the Spanish Marbled White. Spanish Marbled White
Melanargia ines
Click for futher details about the Spotted Fritillary. Spotted Fritillary
Melitaea didyma
Family Papilionidae (The Swallowtails, Festoons and Apollos)
The butterflies of the Papilionidae family consists of Swallowtails, Festoons and Apollos.
Click for futher details about the Spanish Festoon. Spanish Festoon
Zerynthia rumina
Family Pieridae (The Whites and Yellows)
The butterflies of the Pieridae family are more commonly known as "whites" and yellows (or sulphurs). The pigment (whites, yellows and oranges) are derived from uric acid waste products which deposit themselves on the wing scales during pupation. The pupae of all species from the Pieridae family are positioned in an upright fashion, with a single silk girdle around the middle of the pupae.
Click for futher details about the Cleopatra. Cleopatra
Gonepteryx cleopatra
Click for futher details about the Moroccan Orange-tip. Moroccan Orange-tip
Anthocharis belia
Click for futher details about the Portugese Dappled White. Portugese Dappled White
Euchloe tagis
Click for futher details about the Western Dappled White. Western Dappled White
Euchloe crameri