The European Peacock (Aglais io) is one of the most common butterflies in many parts of Europe. Despite of being common, the species is also one of the most beautiful butterflies. Every time I see one of these creatures I’m just amazed.
This butterfly overwinters as adult butterfly, which makes it one of the earliest species to start flying in spring. They pop-up in two generations. The first are the specimens that have made it through winter, and the second generation formed by the fresh butterflies that hatch around July.
In 2014 this species was well present both in spring and late summer. Even though it has been a very poor butterfly year the European Peacock was doing well and I got many occasions to catch one with my camera. Here’s a gallery of my top shots taken in 2014.
For those interested in more than just the flying beauty there’s some shots on the other stages of metamorphosis. It’s a relatively easy species to find and raise. Furthermore, you’ll get the best close-up on the adult butterfly once hatched. In 2014, I located two “nests” of caterpillars. One at the very early stage and the second with rather large ones. Unfortunately, I had high loss due to parasites. Only a handful made it to an adult butterfly.