White Admiral, Hannenove Skov, Falster
The White Admiral is rather rare in Denmark, but it appears in big numbers locally and in certain years. It is most frequent in Nordsjælland and at the islands Lolland-Falster, Bornholm and Møn. Cool early summers seem to reduce the population. It has been breeding at Funen, but has not been found there after 1986. Only few findings from Jutland and no one later than 1950.
The wing span is 48-60 mm. It is easy to recognize by the pretty, black-white upperside pattern. The underside is brown-red with white and blue-grey parts and a double row of black spots in the seam-field. The variation is little, but there is a rare form without or with strongly reduced white markings. The flying season is from first July until first August. The best time is usually in the second week of July. The flight is an elegant sailing with few wing strokes. It flies often in the height of about two meter out and in between the foliage and often sits upon a leaf. It seeks especial eagerly to flowering blackberries in small glades, along paths, roads and edges of forests.
Its habitat is forests with vigorous growth of Common Honeysuckle (Lonicera pericyclemum). The caterpillar's food plant is either Common Honeysucke or rarely Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera xylosteum), or snowberry/waxberry (Symphoricarpos rivularis).
Source: Michael Stoltze: Sommerfugle i Danmark 1997
White Admiral in other countries.
photo Hannenove skov, Falster, July 2007: grethe bachmann