Aphantopus hyperantusPhotoWingspan: 48 - 52 mm 

In fresh plumage very distinctive with almost black velvety wings with a clear white fringe. However, as with other browns, the wings soon fade to a dark brown. The underwings, which are usually all that is seen when settled, are crossed by seven black eyespots with white pupils and yellow “halos” - unique in British butterflies. Very slow weak flight, butterfly appears black in flight. 

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Flight Period
The flight period is from mid-June to July. This species rapidly disappears and few are seen after early August. 

Larval Food plants
Tufted Hair-grass (Deschampsia caespitosa), Couch (Agropyron repens), Annual Meadow-Grass (Poa pratensis) 

Woodland glades, edges and rides, country lanes with dense hedgerows, scrubby rank grassland. 

Wiltshire Status
Resident, common & widespread 

Wiltshire Sites
All over the county in suitable habitat, even in urban areas. 

Earliest Sightings

Earliest County Sighting
1st June 2007, Whitesheet Hill Quarry (Brian Shotter) 

Latest County Sighting
29th August 2009 (Tony Horner)