Telling a butterfly from a moth is not always easy as the two are closely related. The easiest way to recognise a butterfly is to look at the antennae: those of the butterfly have clubbed ends whilst, in moths, they are fine and often feathery without the clubbed end. In addition, a butterfly rests with its wings closed tightly, held vertically above the body. In contrast, a moth usually rests with its wings folded horizontally flat over the body, the forewing largely obscuring the hindwing. Butterflies rarely fly at night and many will only fly in bright sunshine. Moths fly mainly at night and the few day-flying species can be readily recognised by their antennae and resting posture.
Picture by Jerry Simpson