Melitaea cinxia - Granville Fritillary Butterfly

Image of Aglais io Butterfly

Formal Name: Melitaea cinxia

Informal Name: Granville Fritillary

Conservation Status: No threat to conservation and numbers have been on the rise

Location: Europe and Asia

Average Wingspan (cm): 3.7

Seen Between: May - July

Description: Aglais io is also known as the Peacock butterfly. It has an average wingspan of 5.3 cm and thrives across Europe and Asia.

Its habitat consists of woodland and meadows, often seen in UK gardens. Eggs of Aglais io are laid in the spring leading to the butterflies being seen between May and July. These butterflies have vibrant red/ orange wings on the upper side, with small spots on them which look like eyes. The underside of the wing is the opposite as it's dark brown/ black all over. It uses the colourful 'eyes' on its wings to intimidate prey, and in some instances, like in the dark, they use a hissing signal to scare them off (this is achieved by rubbing the veins in its wings together).

Aglais ios diet consists of nectar from flowers such as thistle, betony, bluebell, cuckooflower, dandelion, and buddleia. Predators of Aglais Io include mice and small birds. This butterfly's conservation status is not a threat with numbers increasing. They can live up to 11 months.