Large Chequered Skipper Heteropterus morpheus

Scientific Name: Heteropterus morpheus (Hesperiidae).

English Name: Large Chequered Skipper (Skipper family).

French Name: Le Miroir (='mirror').

5 Key Characters:
  • underside yellow with large white spots heavily outlined in black.
  • upperside sooty brownish black with a few small yellowish white spots.
  • legs and antennae orangey yellow.
  • flies very rapidly and jerkily, flashing the contrasting upper and under sides.

Lookalikes: None.

Habitat: Damp heathland, marshes, edges of swamps, woodland edges and clearings.

Flight Period: May-June-July-August.

Caterpillar Host Plant: Grasses, especially Purple Moor Grass Molinia caerulea.

Status: This is a southern species. In the Touraine Loire Valley and Brenne it is very localised and can be common. Can be seen in the Forest of Lancosme in the Brenne, in the Saint Sulpice chapel clearing and the clearing known as le rond des 5 freres. Also present in the Parc de Boussay.

Photographed by Loire Valley Nature:

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