Introduction to Skipper Butterflies

In the British Isles there are 8 resident Skipper butterflies of the family Hesperiidae. Skippers do not have a strong migratory instinct so numbers of species in the British Isles are likely to remain static. However, both the contraction and expansion of ranges of some species is taking place.

In Europe there are thought to be more than 40 species of Skipper butterfly. Several are difficult to identify in the field and may require microscopic inspection to determine species. Future splitting of some sub species into separate species found in different regions is anticipated.

Chequered Skipper (Carterocephalus palaemon)

Until recently the Chequered Skipper was only found in parts of western Scotland but has recently been reintroduced to a site in England.

Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris)

Essex Skipper (Thymelicus lineola)

The image featured of an Essex Skipper was photographed by Paul Browning in Spain. Those taken in the British Isles in process of being added.

Lulworth Skipper (Thymelicus acteon)

Silver-spotted Skipper (Hesperia comma)

The images featured are of Silver-spotted Skippers photographed by Paul Browning in Spain.

Large Skipper (Ochlodes venata)

The Large Skipper species page has images and descriptions of the butterfly and its life cycle including caterpillar and pupa.

Dingy Skipper (Erynnis tages)

Grizzled Skipper (Pyrgus malvae)

Links to Other British Butterfly Galleries

Links to Other Butterfly Galleries