Name: Gatekeeper

Scientific name: Pyronia tithonus

Category: Minibeasts

Nature Stars: 40

What are nature stars?

About: A medium sized butterfly, brown with large bright orange patches in the middle of the wings. Wingspan measures about 4.5 cm. Adults are on the wing in the summer, June to September. A butterfly of grassland, hedgerows and woodland edge. Caterpillars feed on a variety of grasses.

How to identify: The best way to identify the 'brown' butterflies is by looking at the eye spots on their wings. The combination of bright orange patches on brown wings, together with one large eye spot on the fore wing and one smaller eye spot on the rear wing are uniqe to the Gatekeeper.

Where: Found across England and Wales.

Natural Superpowers

  • Predator: 10
  • Agility: 70
  • Rarity: 30
  • Cute factor: 60
  • Traveller: 50

Fantastic fact: A favourite food plant for the adults is ragwort.

Photograph credit: Keith Warmington/

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