Here are 2022's earliest sightings of resident and common migrant butterflies, as reported to Butterfly Conservation.

The butterfly year got off to an amazing start with six species reported on a very mild New Year's Day. Since then a very early Speckled Wood has also been spotted.

To count as first sighting, butterflies must be seen outside and be active (i.e. not in hibernation). If you are confident that you've seen a butterfly species in the UK this year that has not yet been reported below, please contact @email. You can follow all the latest sightings, as they happen, on Twitter @savebutterflies or on Butterfly Conservation's Facebook page.

If you would like to get involved with butterfly recording, not just for first sightings, but to contribute to our assessments of UK trends and to underpin conservation, you can download our free recording app or find out how to take part.

Last update: 05 January 2023

Vernacular name Scientific name Date Location
Swallowtail  Papilio machaon 12 May Norfolk
Dingy Skipper Erynnis tages 10 April Kent, Sussex
Grizzled Skipper Pyrgus malvae 3 April Somerset
Chequered Skipper Carterocephalus palaemon 9 May Northamptonshire
Essex Skipper Thymelicus lineola 11 June Essex
Small Skipper Thymelicus sylvestris 8 June Middlesex
Lulworth Skipper Thymelicus acteon 14 May Dorset
Silver-spotted Skipper Hesperia comma 14th July Surrey
Large Skipper Ochlodes sylvanus 17 May Derbyshire, West Sussex
Wood White Leptidea sinapis 18 April Surrey
Cryptic Wood White Leptidea juvernica 23 April County Armagh
Orange-tip Anthocharis cardamines 17 March Sussex
Large White Pieris brassicae 24 March Sussex
Small White Pieris rapae 1 Jan Gloucestershire
Green-veined White Pieris napi 18 March Sussex
Clouded Yellow Colias croceus 21 March Sussex
Brimstone Gonepteryx rhamni 1 Jan Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire & Somerset
Wall Lasiommata megera 27 March Cornwall
Speckled Wood Pararge aegeria 12 Jan Cornwall
Large Heath Coenonympha tullia 7 June Co. Armagh
Small Heath Coenonympha pamphilus 14 April Sussex
Mountain Ringlet Erebia epiphron 2 June Cumbria
Scotch Argus Erebia aethiops 16th July Selkirkshire
Ringlet Aphantopus hyperantus 9 June Cambridgeshire
Meadow Brown Maniola jurtina 16 May West Sussex
Gatekeeper Pyronia tithonus 30 May Somerset
Marbled White Melanargia galathea 1 June Somerset
Grayling Hipparchia semele 25 May Conwy
Pearl-bordered Fritillary Boloria euphrosyne 13 April Ceridigion
Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary Boloria selene 29 April Devon
Silver-washed Fritillary Argynnis paphia 1 June Cambridgeshire
Dark Green Fritillary Argynnis aglaja 27 May Northamptonshire
High Brown Fritillary Argynnis adippe 4 June Glamorgan
White Admiral Limenitis camilla 7 June Cambridgeshire
Purple Emperor Apatura iris 17 June Essex, Sussex, Buckinghamshire
Red Admiral Vanessa atalanta 1 Jan Derbyshire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Norfolk, Northamptonshire,  Somerset, Suffolk & Sussex
Painted Lady Vanessa cardui 12 Jan Sussex
Peacock Aglais io 1 Jan Bedfordshire, Kent, Norfolk, Somerset, Sussex & Yorkshire
Small Tortoiseshell Aglais urticae 1 Jan Derbyshire, Glamorgan, Hertfordshire, Kent & Yorkshire
Comma Polygonia c-album 1 Jan Kent & Northamptonshire
Marsh Fritillary Euphydryas aurinia 4 May Wiltshire
Glanville Fritillary Melitaea cinxia 6 May Isle of Wight
Heath Fritillary Melitaea athalia 22 May Kent
Duke of Burgundy Hamearis lucina 15 April Buckinghamshire
Small Copper Lycaena phlaeas 26 March East Scotland
Brown Hairstreak Thecla betulae 2 July Sussex
Purple Hairstreak Favonius quercus 13 June Essex
Green Hairstreak Callophrys rubi 26 March West Midlands, Gloucestershire
White-letter Hairstreak Satyrium w-album 3 June Essex
Black Hairstreak Satyrium pruni 27 May Cambridgeshire
Small Blue Cupido minimus 17 April Kent
Holly Blue Celastrina argiolus 10 March Sussex
Large Blue Maculinea arion 28 May Somerset
Silver-studded Blue Plebejus argus 27 May Cornwall
Brown Argus Aricia agestis 21 April Sussex
Northern Brown Argus Aricia artaxerxes 28 May Stirling
Common Blue Polyommatus icarus 18 April Somerset
Adonis Blue Polyommatus bellargus 24 April Kent
Chalk Hill Blue Polyommatus coridon 22 June Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire