First butterfly sightings 2017

Brimstone (male)

Here are 2017's earliest sightings of resident and common migrant butterflies, as reported to Butterfly Conservation.

The first Chalk Hill Blues of the year have been spotted.

If you have seen a butterfly in 2017 that is not yet listed below, and you are confident that you have identified it correctly, please email our Head of Recording with details of your sighting. To count as first sightings, butterflies must be seen outside and be active (i.e. not in hibernation). You can follow all the latest sightings, as they happen, on Twitter @RichardFoxBC or on Butterfly Conservation's Facebook page.

Last update: 26 June 2017
Vernacular name Scientific name Date Location
Swallowtail  Papilio machaon 10 May
Norfolk
Dingy Skipper Erynnis tages 8 April
Kent, Sussex
Grizzled Skipper Pyrgus malvae 2 April
Sussex
Chequered Skipper Carterocephalus palaemon 8 May
Argyll
Essex Skipper Thymelicus lineola 3 June
Kent
Small Skipper  Thymelicus sylvestris 4 June
Essex
Lulworth Skipper  Thymelicus acteon 10 May
Dorset
Silver-spotted Skipper  Hesperia comma  
Large Skipper  Ochlodes sylvanus 20 May
Cambridgeshire
Wood White  Leptidea sinapis 11 April
Shropshire
Cryptic Wood White  Leptidea juvernica 30 April
Co Armagh
Orange-tip  Anthocharis cardamines 15 March
Suffolk
Large White  Pieris brassicae 16 Feb
Kent
Small White  Pieris rapae 4 March
Lincolnshire
Green-veined White  Pieris napi 13 March
Kent
Clouded Yellow Colias croceus 26 March
Dorset
Brimstone Gonepteryx rhamni 10 Jan
Sussex
Wall  Lasiommata megera 8 April
Devon
Speckled Wood  Pararge aegeria 22 Jan
Devon
Large Heath  Coenonympha tullia 27 May
Lancashire
Small Heath  Coenonympha pamphilus 26 March
Surrey
Mountain Ringlet Erebia epiphron 25 May
Cumbria
Scotch Argus Erebia aethiops  
Ringlet Aphantopus hyperantus 2 June
Wiltshire
Meadow Brown Maniola jurtina 21 May
Suffolk
Gatekeeper Pyronia tithonus 1 June
Berkshire & Cambridgeshire
Marbled White Melanargia galathea 31 May
Somerset
Grayling Hipparchia semele 27 May
Conwy
Pearl-bordered Fritillary Boloria euphrosyne 11 April
Devon
Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary Boloria selene 27 April
Devon
Silver-washed Fritillary Argynnis paphia 7 June
Hertfordshire & Sussex
Dark Green Fritillary Argynnis aglaja 30 May
Dorset
High Brown Fritillary Argynnis adippe 11 June
Devon & Glamorgan
White Admiral Limenitis camilla 10 June
Surrey & Sussex
Purple Emperor Apatura iris 11 June
Surrey
Red Admiral Vanessa atalanta 1 Jan
Kent
Painted Lady Vanessa cardui 16 Feb
Dorset
Peacock Aglais io 1 Jan
Somerset & Wiltshire
Small Tortoiseshell Aglais urticae 2 Jan
Leicestershire
Comma Polygonia c-album 20 Jan
Lancashire
Marsh Fritillary Euphydryas aurinia 6 May
Wiltshire
Glanville Fritillary Melitaea cinxia 6 May
Isle of Wight
Heath Fritillary Melitaea athalia 10 May
Devon
Duke of Burgundy  Hamearis lucina 8 April
Hampshire
Small Copper  Lycaena phlaeas 9 March
Surrey
Brown Hairstreak Thecla betulae  
Purple Hairstreak Favonius quercus 12 June
Surrey & Sussex
Green Hairstreak Callophrys rubi 25 March
Cumbria
White-letter Hairstreak Satyrium w-album 4 June
Essex & Kent
Black Hairstreak Satyrium pruni 30 May
Cambridgeshire
Small Blue  Cupido minimus 21 April
Dorset
Holly Blue  Celastrina argiolus 16 Feb
Cornwall
Large Blue  Maculinea arion 24 May
Somerset
Silver-studded Blue  Plebejus argus 26 May
Conwy
Brown Argus  Aricia agestis 23 April
Hampshire
Northern Brown Argus  Aricia artaxerxes 25 May
Borders
Common Blue  Polyommatus icarus 3 April
Surrey
Adonis Blue  Polyommatus bellargus 27 April
Kent
Chalk Hill Blue  Polyommatus coridon 24 June
Cambridgeshire & Hertfordshire