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Podcast Episode 5: The Purple Emperor

In episode 5 we meet the ebullient Matthew Oates to talk about the inebriated and hedonistic life of His Imperial Majesty, the purple emperor. We talk about the life cycle of this magnificent butterfly, what we’re learning about them at Knepp Wildland, and how to go about spotting one yourself. Finally, and most importantly, we learn the origins of the not-so-ancient proverb “When tits are down, emperors are up!” Move over Confucius…

The filthy habits of the purple emperor – two males feeding on a fox dropping. Photo by Matthew Oates.
Purple emperor on an oak leaf
A purple emperor caterpillar, named Raymonda, and her chomp marks

If you liked hearing from Matthew on this podcast then you might be interested in reading some of his books, of note his most recent works In Pursuit of Butterflies and His Imperial Majesty.

You might also enjoy his poetic presence on Twitter @MatthewOates76

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Our 12+ Policy

Knepp Wildland Safaris and campsite are all about the quiet and patient observation of nature.

Some of the species we are likely to encounter are shy or can be frightened by loud noises or sudden movements. Our campsite with open-air fire-pits, wood-burning stoves and an on-site pond is unsuitable for small children.

For this reason, our safaris, holiday cottages and campsite are suitable only for children of 12 and over.

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