Thymelicus acteon - photo © K. Bormpoudaki

Thymelicus acteon, Crete - photo © K. Bormpoudaki

Thymelicus acteon


Thymelicus acteon is a butterfly of the family Hesperiidae on the island of Crete, Greece.

Scientific name

Thymelicus acteon (Rottemburg, 1775)

Common name

Lulworth Skipper


Family: Hesperiidae > Subfamily: Hesperiinae > Tribus: Hesperiini > Genus: Thymelicus


Male to female: 25-30 mm


On the forewing, the upperside is brown and grey shaded. The underside is light brown colored with pale marks in the postdiscal area. A thin line of androconia is also present.

On the hindwing the upper side is similar to the upper side of the forewing; The underside is light brown without any markings.

Generally, both sexes have a similar appearance, but the female is slightly larger than the male with additional pale gold markings on the forewing, which form a gentle curve.


It is active in warm, sunny, and calm weather, at which time its rapid zig-zagging flight, low to the ground, is very difficult to follow.


Thymelicus acteon in Crete live in mountains or lowland, in dry sunny slopes, shrub grassland, rocky slopes, olive groves, river and lake banks, cultivated areas.

Food plant

The larva feeds on Poaceae plants.

Flight Period

The butterfly flies in one generation per year.

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Thymelicus acteon has a similar appearance to Thymelicus sylvestris, but it differs in being a darker more olive color. The female also has a pale gold discal patch on the forewing, which forms a gentle curve unique to this species.


Least Concern (LC)

(*European Red List of Butterflies, 2010)

Thymelicus Acteon Distribution Map

*based on

Thymelicus acteon location map based on greek butterflies distributions map by L.N. Pamperis (revised 2021)