The Marsh Fritillary Hunt is On !

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In conjunction with Wetland Survey Ireland and Faith Wilson, I am working on the Marsh Fritillary Survey of the Irish midlands at present. The project is being funded by the National Parks and Wildlife Service. 

The Marsh Fritillary (Euphydras aurinia), is the only insect species found in Ireland, which is listed on Annex II of the E.U. Habitats Directive. At this time of the year the larvae live in colonial nests or webs and feed on Devils Bit Scabious (Succisa pratensis). 

A number of sites have been located where populations of the butterfly occur, with the star sites being the North Bull Island Dublin and Derryville near Littleton in Tipperary. 

The picture opposite shows caterpillars on the Irish Peatland Conservation Council reserve at Lullymore in Co Kildare. 

© Peter Foss 2012