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Butterfly Conservation Warwickshire - Branch Logo featuring the White-letter Hairstreak butterfly.Butterfly Conservation.

Butterflies - Gatekeeper (Pyronia tithonus)

The Gatekeeper or Hedge Brown as it is sometime known is usually found in gateways and along hedgerows. It is often seen in association with Meadow Brown butterflies. The Gatekeeper is an attractive butterfly with its bright orange/brown wings fringed with a wide earthy/grey brown and distinctive black and white eyespot.

The colour and patterning of the wings can be very variable and there are several named aberrations. They are particularly fond of feeding on Bramble and Ragwort.

  • Larval Food Plants
  • Habitat
  • Status
  • Key Sites
  • Links
  • Photographs

Bents (Agrostis spp.)
Fescues (Festuca spp.)
Meadow-grasses (Poa spp.)
Common Couch (Elytrigia repens)

The Gatekeeper can be found anywhere where tall grasses grow close to hedges, trees, or scrub, especially along hedgerows and woodland rides where there is a plentiful nectar source.

Resident in Warwickshire.

Harbury Spoilbank (WWT Reserve)
Rough Hill Wood (WWT Reserve)

Find out more about the Gatekeeper online at the following links;

Flight Chart
The flight chart below is based on observations of the adult Gatekeeper butterfly in Warwickshire between 2005 and 2008. Peak periods are shown in dark green.

Gatekeeper Flight Chart

Distribution Maps

Gatekeeper - 2011 records / distribution. Gatekeeper - 2010 records / distribution. Gatekeeper - 2000 to 2009 records / distribution.
2011 (1yr) 2010 (1yr) 2000-09 (10yr)

GatekeeperGatekeeper © Steven Cheshire - Male

Annual First Sightings
First sighting dates are based on records of Gatekeeper submitted online. Please note that these dates are not updated retrospectively to include records submitted to the branch recorder in other forms.

26/06/2018 Abbey Farm Wolvey

24/06/2017 Cuttlebrook NR

02/07/2016 Mancetter Quarry

27/06/2015 Draycote Meadow

18/06/2014 Tasker's Meadow, Stockton

12/07/2013 Mancetter Coventry Canal / Ryton Wo

08/07/2012 Snitterfield Bushes

29/06/2011 Snitterfield Bushes

03/07/2010 Oxhouse Farm Drive

02/07/2009 Fenny Compton and Shotterswell

03/07/2008 Baddesley Colliery Site

01/07/2007 Ashlawn Cutting NR, Rugby

Other Species

Please select an alternative species from the list below.