The first adult Glanville Fritillary butterfly of 2015 was seen on the Isle of Wight yesterday, the 4th May and hopefully during this month many more will emerge along our southern coast.
A sight that is not normally seen however is the fritillaries' pupal stage,particularly in the wild. Of course like other species of butterfly some are reared in captivity and sadly we have collectors from the mainland visiting our Glanville sites in the early spring to take caterpillars.So to discover pupae in their natural habitat is very satisfying and uncommon.
Once the full grown caterpillars have dispersed from their communal nest in April each will find a suitable place to pupate.The three pupae or chrysalises found today were attached by their pads of silk to the underside of small stones.Pupa length 13-14mm. This stage will last about three weeks.