Meadow Brown (Maniola jurtina)
Species

Male. Taken at Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon on June 14th 2014.
(1/200th sec at f13. Approx 2.25x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Male underside. Taken at Bernwood Forest, Bucks, on June 26th 2016.
(1/640th sec at f14. Approx 2.25x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Female. Taken at Chimney Meadows, Oxon on July 10th 2011.
(1/160th sec at f13. Approx 2.25x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Female underside. Taken at Aston Upthorpe Downs, Oxon on July 21st 2013.
(1/400th sec at f14. Approx 2.25x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Mating pair. Taken at Daneway Banks, Glos, on June 25th 2016.
(1/200th sec at f14. Approx 2.25x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Female ab. alba. Taken at Bowdown Wood, Berks, on July 23rd 2011.
(1/320th sec at f14. Approx 2.25x lifesize. © David Hastings)

Description

Wing span: 42-46 mm

Meadow Browns are often seen in large numbers feeding on Bramble alongside other grassland species such as the Gatekeeper and Ringlet. Like the Ringlet, the Meadow Brown will fly in dull weather when most other butterfly species are inactive. The female differs from the male in having orange marks on its forewings. It also has brown tips to the forewing underside and a more distinct line across the underside of the hindwing. There is an aberration which can occur in the female, where the usually fulvous patch of the forewings is replaced by white. This is called ab. alba.

Subspecies insularis occurs throughout the British Isles with the exception of Ireland, north-west Scotland, the Isle of Man and the Isles of Scilly. Subspecies splendida is found in north-west Scotland and the Isle of Man, cassiteridum is found on the Isles of Scilly, and iernes is found in Ireland.

The Meadow Brown occurs in a wide variety of grassland habitats such as downland heathland coastal dunes meadows roadside verges, hedgerows, woodland rides and clearings. It will also occur in urban habitats such as parks, large gardens, and cemeteries where grassy areas are left to grow tall.

There is one brood per year, with adults on the wing from mid-June to the end of September. The larva is the over-wintering stage.

Larval foodplants include various Bents, Fescues and Meadow grasses, Cock's-foot, Downy Oat-grass and False Brome.

Adults feed primarily on Bramble, Buttercups, Carline Thistle, Devil's-bit Scabious, Fleabane, Hemp Agrimony, Knapweeds, Marjoram, Privet, Ragwort, Selfheal, Teasel, Thistles and Yarrow.

The male is the most active of the two sexes and finds a mate either by patrolling, or by investigating any butterfly that flies past his perch. Females are normally only active when nectaring or egg-laying and spend most of their time resting near the ground. Here they sit camouflaged, with wings closed and forewings tucked beneath the hindwings. When disturbed, they raise their forewings to reveal a large eye spot that must appear threatening to any predator.

This species is of Least Concern on the UK list.

Sightings

10-Sep-2018 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
25-Aug-2018 : Standlake Common, Oxon (1)
20-Aug-2018 : Otmoor, Oxon (2)
16-Aug-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (1)
07-Aug-2018 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (150+)
06-Aug-2018 : Otmoor, Oxon (13)
05-Aug-2018 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (6)
02-Aug-2018 : Lardon Chase, Berks (80+)
02-Aug-2018 : Lid's Down, Oxon (13)
31-Jul-2018 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (11)
31-Jul-2018 : Otmoor, Oxon (8)
26-Jul-2018 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
25-Jul-2018 : Vercors Natural Park, France
23-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)
16-Jul-2018 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
15-Jul-2018 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (2)
14-Jul-2018 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (25+)
14-Jul-2018 : Watlington Hill, Oxon (20+)
13-Jul-2018 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (2)
12-Jul-2018 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (30+)
12-Jul-2018 : Parsonage Moor, Oxon (10+)
12-Jul-2018 : Cothill Fen, Oxon (15+)
10-Jul-2018 : Greenham Common, Berks (8)
10-Jul-2018 : Fence Wood, Berks (20+)
09-Jul-2018 : Otmoor, Oxon (100+)
08-Jul-2018 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
07-Jul-2018 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
07-Jul-2018 : Besselsleigh Wood, Oxon (10)
05-Jul-2018 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (2)
04-Jul-2018 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
04-Jul-2018 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (75+)
02-Jul-2018 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (2)
01-Jul-2018 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (4)
01-Jul-2018 : Silchester Common, Hants (30+)
01-Jul-2018 : Fence Wood, Berks (25+)
30-Jun-2018 : Garden, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
28-Jun-2018 : Myers Allotment, Lancashire (2)
28-Jun-2018 : Foulshaw Moss, Cumbria (4)
27-Jun-2018 : Arnside Knott, Cumbria (10+)
27-Jun-2018 : Gait Barrows NNR, Lancashire (4)
26-Jun-2018 : Leighton Moss, Lancashire (2)
26-Jun-2018 : Latterbarrow, Cumbria (2)
25-Jun-2018 : Ravenglass, Cumbria (4)
25-Jun-2018 : Eskdale, Cumbria (3)
24-Jun-2018 : Irton Pike, Cumbria (1)
21-Jun-2018 : Whelford Pools, Glos (2)
21-Jun-2018 : Daneway Banks, Gloucs (40+)
21-Jun-2018 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
20-Jun-2018 : Standlake Common, Oxon (7)
18-Jun-2018 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (5)
18-Jun-2018 : Otmoor, Oxon (30+)
18-Jun-2018 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (16)
15-Jun-2018 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (60+)
14-Jun-2018 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (40)
11-Jun-2018 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (28+m)
06-Jun-2018 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (1m)
03-Jun-2018 : Bentley Wood, Wilts (1m)

29-Aug-2017 : Lollingdon Hill, Oxon (1)
29-Aug-2017 : Lid's Down, Oxon (1)
26-Aug-2017 : Otmoor, Oxon (6)
24-Aug-2017 : Pewsey Downs NNR, Wilts (45+)
20-Aug-2017 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (2)
17-Aug-2017 : Lardon Chase, Berks (50+)
16-Aug-2017 : Otmoor, Oxon (10+)
16-Aug-2017 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (3)
15-Aug-2017 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (10)
12-Aug-2017 : Dersingham Bog, Norfolk (1)
11-Aug-2017 : Bucknell Wood, Northants (4)
06-Aug-2017 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (16+)
06-Aug-2017 : Cothill Fen, Oxon (6)
03-Aug-2017 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (20+)
03-Aug-2017 : Otmoor, Oxon (15+)
01-Aug-2017 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (6)
29-Jul-2017 : Standlake Common, Oxon (1)
23-Jul-2017 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (80+)
22-Jul-2017 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
18-Jul-2017 : Greenham Common, Berks (20+)
18-Jul-2017 : Fence Wood, Berks (10+)
18-Jul-2017 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
16-Jul-2017 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
09-Jul-2017 : Garden, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
08-Jul-2017 : Aston Upthorpe Downs, Oxon (100+)
08-Jul-2017 : Bayworth, Oxon (25+)
04-Jul-2017 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
02-Jul-2017 : Silchester Common, Hants (20+)
02-Jul-2017 : Fence Wood, Berks (50+)
01-Jul-2017 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (50+)
01-Jul-2017 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (2)
01-Jul-2017 : Waterperry Wood, Oxon (4)
27-Jun-2017 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (2)
27-Jun-2017 : Garden, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
24-Jun-2017 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (30+)
20-Jun-2017 : Garden, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
18-Jun-2017 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (4)
18-Jun-2017 : Waterperry Wood, Oxon (15+)
17-Jun-2017 : Garden, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
17-Jun-2017 : Standlake Common, Oxon (50+)
15-Jun-2017 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (35+)
14-Jun-2017 : Daneway Banks, Gloucs (7+)
14-Jun-2017 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (35+)
13-Jun-2017 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
10-Jun-2017 : Velebits National Park, Croatia
09-Jun-2017 : Paklenica National Park, Croatia
06-Jun-2017 : Irinovac, Croatia
05-Jun-2017 : Goranje Taboriste, Croatia
03-Jun-2017 : Abingdon, Oxon (8)
03-Jun-2017 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (1)

29-Aug-2016 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (50+)
28-Aug-2016 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (1)
21-Aug-2016 : Hackpen Hill, Oxon (30+)
21-Aug-2016 : Pewsey Downs NNR, Wilts (14)
14-Aug-2016 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (3)
14-Aug-2016 : Otmoor, Oxon (15+)
12-Aug-2016 : Marston Meadows, Oxon (4)
12-Aug-2016 : University Parks, Oxford, Oxon (1)
07-Aug-2016 : Otmoor, Oxon (10+)
06-Aug-2016 : Fence Wood, Berks (5)
06-Aug-2016 : Greenham Common, Berks (11+)
31-Jul-2016 : Otmoor, Oxon (20+)
30-Jul-2016 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (120+)
23-Jul-2016 : Otmoor, Oxon (25+)
23-Jul-2016 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (25+)
23-Jul-2016 : Bernwood Meadows, Bucks (50+)
16-Jul-2016 : Silchester Common, Hants (6)
16-Jul-2016 : Crookham Common, Berks (3)
15-Jul-2016 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (1)
14-Jul-2016 : Lardon Chase, Berks (15+)
14-Jul-2016 : Chazey Heath, Oxon (2)
11-Jul-2016 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (30+)
09-Jul-2016 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (14+)
07-Jul-2016 : Fermyn Wood, Northants (6)
05-Jul-2016 : Smardale Gill NNR, Cumbria (5)
04-Jul-2016 : Leighton Moss, Lancashire (1)
03-Jul-2016 : Gait Barrows NNR, Lancashire (3)
03-Jul-2016 : Arnside Knott, Cumbria (20+)
02-Jul-2016 : Allithwaite Quarry, Cumbria (4)
30-Jun-2016 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (10m)
28-Jun-2016 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (27+m)
26-Jun-2016 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (4m,1f)
26-Jun-2016 : Otmoor, Oxon (1)
25-Jun-2016 : Daneway Banks, Gloucs (10+m,1f)
25-Jun-2016 : Whelford Pools, Glos (4m)
19-Jun-2016 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (2m)

19-Sep-2015 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (1m,4f)
12-Sep-2015 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (1)
06-Sep-2015 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1f)
06-Sep-2015 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (1f)
29-Aug-2015 : Lardon Chase, Berks (50+)
22-Aug-2015 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (25+)
22-Aug-2015 : Yeosden Bank, Bucks (50+)
16-Aug-2015 : Hackpen Hill, Oxon (7)
16-Aug-2015 : Pewsey Downs NNR, Wilts (100+)
15-Aug-2015 : Rushy Common, Oxon (2)
12-Aug-2015 : University Parks, Oxford, Oxon (1)
09-Aug-2015 : Aston Upthorpe Downs, Oxon (32+)
08-Aug-2015 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
08-Aug-2015 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (6)
06-Aug-2015 : Marston Meadows, Oxon (1m, 22f)
06-Aug-2015 : University Parks, Oxford, Oxon (1)
02-Aug-2015 : Bernwood Meadows, Bucks (100+)
02-Aug-2015 : Otmoor, Oxon (20+)
30-Jul-2015 : Aston Rowant NNR, Oxon (40+)
26-Jul-2015 : Bansko meadows, Bulgaria
20-Jul-2015 : nr Samokov, Bulgaria
18-Jul-2015 : Crookham Common, Berks (10)
18-Jul-2015 : Silchester Common, Hants (8)
12-Jul-2015 : Parsonage Moor, Oxon (3)
11-Jul-2015 : Aston Upthorpe Downs, Oxon (60+)
11-Jul-2015 : The Holies, Berks (50+)
10-Jul-2015 : Garden, Abingdon, Oxon (2)
09-Jul-2015 : University Parks, Oxford, Oxon (1)
04-Jul-2015 : Calvert Jubilee, Bucks (5)
04-Jul-2015 : Otmoor, Oxon (25+)
04-Jul-2015 : Charndon, Bucks (5)
03-Jul-2015 : Bernwood Forest, Bucks (20+)
03-Jul-2015 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (20+)
02-Jul-2015 : Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon (21+)
02-Jul-2015 : Garden, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
30-Jun-2015 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
30-Jun-2015 : Garden, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
29-Jun-2015 : Marston Meadows, Oxon (50+)
27-Jun-2015 : Stanford Dingley, Berks (10+)
23-Jun-2015 : Allotment, Abingdon, Oxon (1)
21-Jun-2015 : Otmoor, Oxon (4)
21-Jun-2015 : Whitecross Green Wood, Oxon (15+)
19-Jun-2015 : Dunkery Hill, Somerset (5+)
18-Jun-2015 : Haddon Hill, Somerset (1)
16-Jun-2015 : Heddon Valley, Devon (1)
15-Jun-2015 : Collard Hill, Somerset (17+)
07-Jun-2015 : Lardon Chase, Berks (6m)