Small Tortoiseshell

These popular garden visitors can be seen at any time of year but mostly on warm spring and summer days. Small Tortoiseshell Facts: • They lay their eggs on the underside of nettle leaves. • Early names included 'The lesser Tortoise-shell Butterfly' and 'Nettle Tortoiseshell' but in Scotland it was known by the more sinister-sounding 'Devil's Butterfly' or 'Witch's Butterfly'. • The similar-looking Large Tortoiseshell was a common butterfly in Victorian times but is now considered to be extinct in Britain due to a range of factors including parasitism, climate change and Dutch Elm Disease which devastated its main foodplant.
Small Tortoiseshell
Chingford Plain
Waltham Forest
August 29, 2021