Warren's Skipper

Pyrgus warrenensis


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Male, Switzerland, July 2013



Male, Switzerland, July 2013



Male, July 2012, Switzerland



The same male



The same male



A different individual (probably Warren's skipper but unconfirmed as I didn't see the underside)

The following pictures are of two females I netted for the purposes of identification in July 2010. Once identified, they were immediately released and sadly chose not to settle nearby but zoom off over the very difficult terrain, preventing me getting any natural, flower shots!







This is a very local skipper of the high Alps. It most resembles the large grizzled skipper but is much smaller and has extremely weak markings on the upperside, reduced to points on the forewing. I first saw the species in July 2010, when I went up specially to find it. I wandered through woods and flowery clearings, finally breaking out onto steep open hillside with lots of flowers and rocky gullies. There, I saw a total of 4 individuals, though it was not easy to be sure exactly how many as large grizzled skippers and carline skippers were both on the wing, as well as red-underwing skippers, which also somethimes deceived the eye! I visited the same site on 23rd July 2012 and again in 2013, when I finally found the heart of the colony. In 2014 I'll be there a little earlier in the day for better pictures!

This is one of the earlier high alpine species, emerging on average two weeks before large grizzled skipper, and I need to go up earlier in the year to get better pictures!