Butterfly (Small Skipper)
The Small Skipper Butterfly is very common throughout England and can be found in rough grassland where there is tall grass, on roadside verges, woodland clearings, meadows and hedgerows. It likes to rest and sunbathe on the top of grass with its wings partially closed and it can be seen from July to September.
The Small Skipper Butterfly lives in colonies and can easily be recognised by its rusty orange coloured wings, its orange furry-looking body and by its orange-tipped antennae. It also has a silver-white underside. The male has a distinctive black stripe on the edge of its forewings which comprise of scent scales. These scent scales help to attract females.
The female Small Skipper Butterfly lays her eggs on soft blades of grass. A green caterpillar with darker green lines on its body hatches out of each egg. Each caterpillar also has a single white line running down its body. The Small Skipper caterpillar immediately uses its silky web-like thread to draw blades of grass together to make a protected grass home around itself. It rests in its grass home during the day and comes out at night to feed. Inside the grass home, the caterpillar also forms a chrysalis by spinning a silk case around. Inside the chrysalis the caterpillar transforms itself into a beautiful Small Skipper Butterfly.