Purple Hairstreak Butterfly (Neozephyrus quercus)



A small butterfly with dark brown upper-wings with purple patches or sheen. The under-wings are light grey with “hairstreak” white lines and two orange spots on the trailing edge of the hind wing.


Locally in colonies right across Southern England and Wales less common further North.


Mostly seen flying around in the canopy at the top of oak trees, in areas from woodland rides, and heaths to parks and urban areas.

On occasions Purple Hairstreak butterflies come down to the lower branches on warm sunny days or move to nearby Ash trees in search of Honey-dew.

Purple Hairstreak Butterfly - (Neozephyrus quercus) - © Urban Butterfly Garden 2010-2012

Purple Hairstreak Butterfly – (Neozephyrus quercus)

  • Family Group: Lycaenidae – Blues
  • When: July to August.
  • Size: Wingspan around 38mm.
  • Larval Food Plant: Oak flowers and leaf buds.
  • Adult Nectar Plant: Oak sap, Ash and Aspen Honey Dew, may occasionally be seen on Brambles, Hemp Agrimony (Eupatorium cannabinum).
  • Photographed: 15th July, Fermyn Woods, Northamptonshire.
© Urban Butterfly Garden 2010-2024