This Fritillary is similar in size and habitats to the Pearl-bordered Fritillary but is more widespread and occurs in damper, grassy habitats as well as woodland clearings and moorland.

The adults fly close to the ground, stopping frequently to take nectar from flowers such as Bramble and thistles. It can be identified from the more numerous whitish pearls on the underside hind wings, the outer ones bordered by black chevrons and from the larger black central dot.

The butterfly remains widespread and locally abundant in Scotland especially in the north and west.

Size and Family

  • Family: Fritillaries
  • Size: Medium
  • Wing Span Range (male to female): 41-44mm

Conservation Status

  • Section 41 species of principal importance under the NERC Act in England
  • Listed on Section 7 of the Environment (Wales) Act 2016
  • Scottish Biodiversity List
  • UK BAP status: Priority Species           
  • Butterfly Conservation priority: High                    
  • European Status: Not threatened 

Caterpillar Foodplants

The most widely used foodplants are Common Dog-violet (Viola riviniana) and Marsh Violet (V. palustris). It may occasionally feed on other violet species.



Four main habitats are used; damp grassland flushes and moorland (in northern and western Britain); woodland glades and clearings (mainly in southern Britain); grassland with Bracken and/or patches of scrub and open wood pasture and wood edges in Scotland.