Nature Champions: Northern Brown Argus

Image of a Northern Brown Argus Butterfly with its brown wings open.

A small butterfly with a northern distribution being found in northern England and the eastern half of Scotland.  The adults have a distinctive small white dot on the centre of their brown upperwings.  They are associated sheltered, flowery grasslands, usually on sunny slopes with thin soils.  The caterpillars feed solely on Common Rock-rose.

Action Needed

  • Appropriate and targeted agri-environment schemes which support and encourage effective management.
  • A Northern Brown Argus threat layer in the Land Information Service GIS map to flag up the presence of Northern Brown Argus presence and habitat at an early stage in planning of afforestation schemes.
  • Targeted conservation action focused in the Scottish Border’s core range


  1. Afforestation of the species-rich grasslands on which they depend.
  2. Overgrazing due to agricultural intensification and increased deer populations.
  3. Agricultural abandonment leading to the loss of grazing and development of unsuitable rank grassland and scrub.

MSP Nature Champion

Member for:

Related Species & Habitats

Upland Calcareous Grasslands

  • National Trust for Scotland
  • Plantlife Scotland

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.