Common brown Click to enlarge image
Common brown butterfly, (Heteronympha merope, Family Nymphalidae). Image: Bruce Hulbert
© Bruce Hulbert

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    merope
    Genus
    Heteronympha
    Subfamily
    Satyrinae
    Family
    Nymphalidae
    Super Family
    Papilionoidea
    Order
    Lepidoptera
    Phylum
    Arthopoda
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    5.6 cm - 6.5 cm

Introduction

The Common Brown Butterfly is active in spring and summer when there is sunshine and plenty of flowers to feed on.


Heteronympha merope
Common Brown Butterfly, Heteronympha merope Image: Bruce Hulbert
© Bruce Hulbert

Habitat

The Common Brown Butterfly lives in urban areas, forests and woodlands.

Distribution

The Common Brown Butterfly is found in south-eastern Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia, and Tasmania.

Seasonality

The Common Brown Butterfly is active in spring and summer when there is sunshine and plenty of flowers to feed on.

Life history cycle

Mating in the Common Brown Butterfly occurs during October or November and the males die shortly after. Females live for three months or more, waiting for the heat of summer to pass and the grass to grow before laying their eggs in early March. They lay their eggs directly onto several introduced and native grass species to ensure an immediate food supply when the larvae emerge.