Red Admiral


The red admiral is a beautiful butterfly with orange/red and black wings. This butterfly can be observed during almost all the year. The red admiral is a common butterfly which usually stays on flowers. It is not well-known that the red admiral is a good traveler, indeed. They fly in spring from South-Europe to the North and go back to the south during autumn. Even if a few individuals do not migrate, the red admiral usually starts its migration around September/October. The individuals which stay in Maastricht, are the ones who can survive dark winter by staying into shelters during this period. When the sun is up during January-days, it is possible to observe a red admiral flying, this one is a brave over winterer.

Relationship with humans

Why we do what we do


The atalanta is a nectar consumer which needs flowery plants to feed itself. This butterfly loves thistle fields, butterfly bushes, hemp-agrimony and ivy. The atalanta is also a lover of rotten fruits. They can form groups to eat a fruit which had fallen from its tree in parcs or in people’s garden.The larvae of red admiral live on nettles, on which they hang down in small groups. If we observe them, we will see the larvae band together on the leaves of nettle. In the large area in the parc such as the banks of the Jeker, where nettles grow, the red admiral can fly a long time in order to search for a plant which will suit its requirements. Once the red admiral has found the adequate plant, the butterfly will sit on the plant. In order for the red admiral to stay, we need to be thrifty with the nettles.