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Butterflies - 1


Comma ButterflyThe Comma butterfly appears in the Autumn and is commonly seen feeding on rotting windfall fruit. It most unusual feature is the highly scalloped wing edge. When the wings are closed there appears a pale comma shape on the otherwise dark wing, from which the insect gets its name.

Brimstone ButterflyBrimstone Butterflies are just about the first to appear in the spring, disappear during the summer, and reappear in late autumn. In the spring they are particularly attracted to pussy willow flowers which arrive very early in Spring.

The insects overwinter as adults, and are what you see in the spring. This is the characteristic colour of the male. Note the orange spots on the rear wings, which are more obvious on the other side of the wing. The female is white, but sports the same spots. The underwing (not shown here) is greenish, and the resemblance to a leaf is stunning.

Peacock ButterflyThe Peacock butterfly is probably the most commonly seen large butterfly, most likely seen of flowering garden plants such as buddleia (often known as the 'butterfly bush') and Sedums.

In the sunshine the upper wing look quite brightly coloured, but is actually quite dark, and the underwing almost black. The eye spot pattern is said to startle potential predators.

The pictures of butterflies in free flight were taken by us using a flash triggered by breaking an infrared beam. If you like such photographs look for books and pictures by Stephen Dalton who showed the world how to raise such photography to an art form. He mostly photographs large tropical exotica - we have designed our equipment for more typical UK sized subjects.

If you are interested in Butterflies there is a dedicated society in the UK: The British Butterfly Conservation Society Limited, P.O. Box 222, Dedham, Colchester, Essex, who you can e-mail

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