Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Kirkstall Hill Large Skipper

After work I strolled over to nearby Kirkstall Hill where I spotted this male Large Skipper feeding on Red Clover, a first for this year, and a super sighting so close to home.  Previously I've struggled to distinguish between the Small and Large Skippers but this pic clearly shows the mottled wings of a Large Skipper rather than the cleaner golden wings of a Small Skipper, and the prominent diagonal black mark on the forewing indicates the male of the species.

Kirkstall Hill is adjacent to the busy crossroads of Kirkstall Lane and Morris Lane, and forms a steep south west facing grassland area.  The tall growing grasses are dotted with patches of red and white clover, buttercups, common vetch, birdsfoot trefoil, ribwort plantain, dandelion. Despite the discarded cans and bottles, the top path offers a great view towards Kirkstall Abbey and the Aire valley beyond, but I have to admit that this golden winged wonder was the highlight of my evening stroll.


  1. Lovely skipper, and how skilful it is to manoeuvre that long proboscis into the tiny clover flower.

  2. Brilliant images of the Large Skipper on the Red Clover....Well done Linda, a delight to the eye.

  3. Great find, Linda - and lovely pictures too.

  4. Hello Rob, absolutely, fascinating creatures.

    Hello Pete, thanks, I was so pleased with the sighting of a Large Skipper so close to home.

    Hello Emma, thank you, Ive been keeping an eye on this patch, anticipating the emergence of a few butterflies, so will have to keep a regular check. Its always fascinating to find butterflies utilising the pockets of greenspace within urban locations.

    Have a good week, Linda


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