Large Skipper (Ochlodes sylvanus)
Species

Male. Taken at Waterperry Wood, Oxon., on June 18th 2017.
(1/320th sec at f14. Approx 3.5x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Male underside. Taken at Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon., on June 18th 2018.
(1/640th sec at f13. Approx 3.5x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Female. Taken at Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon., on June 18th 2018.
(1/200th sec at f13. Approx 3.5x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Mating pair. Taken at Otmoor, Oxon., on July 8th 2019.
(1/200th sec at f13. Approx 3.25x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Description

Wing span: 30 - 36mm

Slightly larger than Small and Essex Skippers, this species also has more extensive wing markings. It has black antennae, which have hooked tips.

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

08-Aug-2019 : Otmoor, Oxon (1)
22-Jul-2019 : Otmoor, Oxon (7)
22-Jul-2019 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (4)
21-Jul-2019 : Watlington Hill, Oxon (5)
16-Jul-2019 : Bucknell Wood, Northants (14)
12-Jul-2019 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (6)
12-Jul-2019 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (10+)
11-Jul-2019 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (3)
10-Jul-2019 : Aston Upthorpe Downs, Oxon (2)
08-Jul-2019 : Otmoor, Oxon (15)
08-Jul-2019 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (10)
08-Jul-2019 : Bernwood Meadows, Bucks (6)
07-Jul-2019 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (2)
04-Jul-2019 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (10)
04-Jul-2019 : Parsonage Moor, Oxon (1)
03-Jul-2019 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (50+)
30-Jun-2019 : Fence Wood, Berks (8)
30-Jun-2019 : Silchester Common, Hants (1)
28-Jun-2019 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (5)
27-Jun-2019 : Standlake Common, Oxon (6)
24-Jun-2019 : Otmoor, Oxon (14)
22-Jun-2019 : Waterperry Wood, Oxon (60+)
22-Jun-2019 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (16)
22-Jun-2019 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (6)
20-Jun-2019 : Daneway Banks, Gloucs (1)
18-Jun-2019 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (1)
18-Jun-2019 : Barton Fields, Abingdon, Oxon (3)
18-Jun-2019 : Abingdon, Oxon (6)
16-Jun-2019 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (10)
06-Jun-2019 : Bentley Wood, Wilts (1)
03-Jun-2019 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (1)
03-Jun-2019 : Otmoor, Oxon (1)
02-Jun-2019 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (1)
02-Jun-2019 : Abingdon, Oxon (1)
01-Jun-2019 : Ardley Quarry, Oxon (1)

31-Jul-2018 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (1)
31-Jul-2018 : Otmoor, Oxon (3)
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 : Fence Wood, Berks (20+)
01-Jul-2018 : Silchester Common, Hants (5)
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 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (20+)
18-Jun-2018 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (12)
18-Jun-2018 : Otmoor, Oxon (3)
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 : Bayworth, Oxon (2)
08-Jul-2017 : Aston Upthorpe Downs, Oxon (1)
02-Jul-2017 : Silchester Common, Hants (1)
02-Jul-2017 : Fence Wood, Berks (5+)
01-Jul-2017 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (10+)
01-Jul-2017 : Waterperry Wood, Oxon (10+)
01-Jul-2017 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (20+)
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 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (5+)
23-Jul-2016 : Otmoor, Oxon (2)
16-Jul-2016 : Silchester Common, Hants (2m)
15-Jul-2016 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (3)
11-Jul-2016 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (5)
11-Jul-2016 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (17+)
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 : Otmoor, Oxon (20+)
04-Jul-2015 : Charndon, Bucks (3)
04-Jul-2015 : Calvert Jubilee, Bucks (10+)
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)