The adults fly in July/August and lay eggs near to the larval food plants which are species of violets, (similar to the pearl-bordered fritillary). The eggs are often laid in places where there are dead bracken on the ground or in areas where the underlying rock is limestone the eggs may be laid in moss overlying rocks. The mosaics are typically one-third grass and two-thirds bracken. It likes drier conditions (but not as dry as the Queen of Spain fritillary) than its more common relative Argynnis aglaja, preferring sandy or rocky hills and banks with patches of the food plant for the larvae. It is among the first butterfly species to disappear when the vegetation becomes too lush.
High brown fritillary
Bugle, bramble and thistle flowers are favourite nectar sources for the adult.
The species was once widespread in the United Kingdom but has now greatly declined. It has legal protection in the UK under the 1981 Wildlife and Countryside Act.