Large Skipper (Ochlodes sylvanus)
Species

Male. Taken at Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon on May 28th 2011.
(1/200th sec at F13. Approx 3.5x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Male underside. Taken at Farmoor, Oxon on June 6th 2010.
(1/125th sec at f10. Approx 3x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Female. Taken at Farmoor, Oxon on June 18th 2011.
(1/320th sec at f10. Approx 3x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Female underside. Taken at Chimney Meadow, Oxon on June 20th 2010.
(1/500th sec at f13. Approx 3.5x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Description

Wing span: 30 - 36mm

Slightly larger than Small and Essex Skippers, this species also has more extensive wing markings.

It occurs throughout England and Wales, and appears to be slowly spreading northwards.

It is found in sheltered areas of grassland, where grasses grow tall. Typical sites include meadows, hedgerows, roadside verges, woodland rides and woodland clearings.

The main flight period is late May to August. The larva is the over-wintering stage.

The main larval foodplant is Cock's-foot (Dactylis glomerata), but other grasses are also used.

Bramble and Thistle are favourite nectar sources.

Male Large Skippers alternate between perching, patrolling, basking and feeding. Patrolling behaviour is normally exhibited in the late morning, with perching behaviour the norm in the early morning and afternoon. When perching, males will defend their territory vigorously, and see off any butterfly that intrudes. Typical perches are sunlit leaves at a height of around three feet from the ground.

This species is of Least Concern on the UK list.

Sightings

31-Jul-2018 : Otmoor, Oxon (3)
31-Jul-2018 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (1)
23-Jul-2018 : Vercors Natural Park, France
22-Jul-2018 : Vercors Natural Park, France
21-Jul-2018 : Vercors Natural Park, France
20-Jul-2018 : Vercors Natural Park, France
19-Jul-2018 : Vercors Natural Park, France
17-Jul-2018 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (1)
14-Jul-2018 : Watlington Hill, Oxon (2)
12-Jul-2018 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (1)
10-Jul-2018 : Fence Wood, Berks (3)
02-Jul-2018 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (10+)
01-Jul-2018 : Silchester Common, Hants (5)
01-Jul-2018 : Fence Wood, Berks (20+)
28-Jun-2018 : Foulshaw Moss, Cumbria (15+)
24-Jun-2018 : Irton Pike, Cumbria (1)
21-Jun-2018 : Daneway Banks, Gloucs (6)
21-Jun-2018 : Whelford Pools, Glos (1)
20-Jun-2018 : Standlake Common, Oxon (4)
18-Jun-2018 : Otmoor, Oxon (3)
18-Jun-2018 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (20+)
18-Jun-2018 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (12)
15-Jun-2018 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (2)
14-Jun-2018 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (1)
11-Jun-2018 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (5)
06-Jun-2018 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (4)
03-Jun-2018 : Bentley Wood, Wilts (2m)

16-Aug-2017 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (1)
23-Jul-2017 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (1)
08-Jul-2017 : Aston Upthorpe Downs, Oxon (1)
08-Jul-2017 : Bayworth, Oxon (2)
02-Jul-2017 : Silchester Common, Hants (1)
02-Jul-2017 : Fence Wood, Berks (5+)
01-Jul-2017 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (20+)
01-Jul-2017 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (10+)
01-Jul-2017 : Waterperry Wood, Oxon (10+)
24-Jun-2017 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (2)
18-Jun-2017 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (3+)
18-Jun-2017 : Waterperry Wood, Oxon (17+)
17-Jun-2017 : Standlake Common, Oxon (1)
15-Jun-2017 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (9)
14-Jun-2017 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (1)
07-Jun-2017 : Gracac, Croatia
06-Jun-2017 : Irinovac, Croatia
05-Jun-2017 : Goranje Taboriste, Croatia
03-Jun-2017 : Abingdon, Oxon (1)
28-May-2017 : Pewsey Downs NNR, Wilts (1m)

14-Aug-2016 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (1)
07-Aug-2016 : Otmoor, Oxon (2)
06-Aug-2016 : Fence Wood, Berks (1)
31-Jul-2016 : Otmoor, Oxon (2)
30-Jul-2016 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (1)
23-Jul-2016 : Otmoor, Oxon (2)
23-Jul-2016 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (5+)
16-Jul-2016 : Silchester Common, Hants (2m)
15-Jul-2016 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (3)
11-Jul-2016 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (17+)
11-Jul-2016 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (5)
09-Jul-2016 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (1)
07-Jul-2016 : Fermyn Wood, Northants (2)
05-Jul-2016 : Smardale Gill NNR, Cumbria (1)
03-Jul-2016 : Gait Barrows NNR, Lancashire (3)
02-Jul-2016 : Foulshaw Moss, Cumbria (10+)
02-Jul-2016 : Allithwaite Quarry, Cumbria (2)
30-Jun-2016 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (2)
28-Jun-2016 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (5)
26-Jun-2016 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (4m,2f)
25-Jun-2016 : Daneway Banks, Gloucs (2)
19-Jun-2016 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (4+m)
05-Jun-2016 : Otmoor, Oxon (1m)
02-Jun-2016 : Lymington-Keyhaven NR, Hants (1m)
29-May-2016 : Pewsey Downs NNR, Wilts (1)

02-Aug-2015 : Otmoor, Oxon (1)
02-Aug-2015 : Bernwood Meadows, Bucks (1)
24-Jul-2015 : nr Kirilova polyana, Bulgaria
23-Jul-2015 : Papaz Tchair, Bulgaria
22-Jul-2015 : nr Sandanski, Bulgaria
18-Jul-2015 : Silchester Common, Hants (4)
12-Jul-2015 : Parsonage Moor, Oxon (1)
12-Jul-2015 : Cothill Fen, Oxon (1)
11-Jul-2015 : Aston Upthorpe Downs, Oxon (6)
04-Jul-2015 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (25+)
04-Jul-2015 : Calvert Jubilee, Oxon (10+)
04-Jul-2015 : Charndon, Bucks (3)
04-Jul-2015 : Otmoor, Oxon (20+)
03-Jul-2015 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (20+)
03-Jul-2015 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (30+)
21-Jun-2015 : Otmoor, Oxon (6)
21-Jun-2015 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (13+)
18-Jun-2015 : Haddon Hill, Somerset (5)

26-Jul-2014 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (1)
20-Jul-2014 : Otmoor, Oxon (2)
12-Jul-2014 : Homefield Wood, Bucks (5)
06-Jul-2014 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (5)
06-Jul-2014 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (2)
02-Jul-2014 : North Cave Wetlands, E. Yorkshire (2)
30-Jun-2014 : Tophill Low, E. Yorks (8)
30-Jun-2014 : Kiplingcotes Chalk Pit, E. Yorks (10+)
29-Jun-2014 : Crowle Moor, N. Lincs (20+)
28-Jun-2014 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (6)
26-Jun-2014 : Kresna Gorge, Bulgaria
24-Jun-2014 : Dospat, Bulgaria
24-Jun-2014 : Mesta River fishponds, Bulgaria
23-Jun-2014 : Trigrad Gorge, Bulgaria
21-Jun-2014 : Byal gradets, Bulgaria
21-Jun-2014 : nr Gugutka, Bulgaria
20-Jun-2014 : nr Dolna Kula, Bulgaria
20-Jun-2014 : Valchi Dol, Bulgaria
19-Jun-2014 : Susam Reservoir, Bulgaria
18-Jun-2014 : nr Mirkovo, Bulgaria
16-Jun-2014 : Daneway Banks, Gloucs (12+)
15-Jun-2014 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (20+)
15-Jun-2014 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (14+)
14-Jun-2014 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (4m)
10-Jun-2014 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (2)
08-Jun-2014 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (3)