Similar colours to Small Heath, but more diffused, giving an overall greyish effect. Eye spot located outwith pale streak on forewing, unlike Small Heath.
Wingspan 35 - 40mm.
Single brooded. Ova laid singly on hare's-tail cottongrass, hatching in about 15 days. Larvae feeds from July to September, hibernating until March, and becoming fully grown by May/June. Pupal stage lasts about 3 weeks. In the north, this species may have a 2 year life cycle, remaining as a larva all summer and hibernating in a second winter.
July to August.
Prefers boggy areas and damp acidic moorland. Occurs in suitable habitats in inland Moray, Highland, the Western Isles and Orkney. Absent from Shetland.