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Butterflies Page 6

Image Taken on 09 Sep 2016 at 08:57    Image of day on 28 Oct 2016

Before 9 a.m. on a mid-September morning some warm early sunshine brought out variety of insects into a east facing hedge.
A Comma Butterfly with it's proboscis is wheedling out juice from the ripe blackberry it is perched upon. You can just make out the white 'comma' as a semicircle on the lower (dark) side of the wing nearest to us.


Ref: 20161028_df3_20160909_0857_047 comma butterfly sipping juice from ripe blackberry fruit (crop 1)(r+mb id@768).jpg


Image Taken on 19 Sep 2017 at 16:03    Image of day on 30 Oct 2017

A pristine Comma Butterfly warms itself on a blackberry leaf.


Ref: 20171030_df3_20170919_1603_042 comma butterfly sunbathing on blackberry leaf(r+mb id@1024).jpg


Image Taken on 26 Jul 2013 at 09:03    Image of day on 13 Sep 2013

The delicate on the delicate.
The tiny weight of this Comma Butterfly is about 0.25 gram (See Weights of Insects)
but this is sufficient to substantially pull down the grass seed head. The insect is photographed from below showing the left hand 'comma' but is back lit so you also see the orange pattern from the top of the wing.


Ref: 20130913_a77_20130726_0903_072 comma butterfly viewed from below perched on grass seed head with translucent wings (crop)(r+mb id@768).jpg


Image Taken on 21 May 2019 at 14:59    Image of day on 22 Jun 2019

This overwintered Comma Butterfly has had a few pecks on the edge of the wings (symmetrically so the wings were closed at the time). This quite large butterfly then 'vanished' when finally closing it's wings - that irregular edge disguises the insect remarkably well.


Ref: 20190622_df5_20190521_1459_096+1500_102 comma butterfly with wings closed camouflaged as dead leaf 1+2 of 2 (montage)(r+mb id@768).jpg


Image Taken on 02 Aug 2009 at 14:26    Image of day on 17 Sep 2009

This tatty individual is our first sighting of ANY 'blue' butterfly for 2 seasons. He never produced a good single top and bottom wing visible in a single shot, so here is a montage of a single flight about 1/4 seconds apart.


Ref: 20090917_da1_20090802_1426_078+_079+1527_175 ft1 common blue (q) butterfly (accurate montage approx 250ms apart) with clover (montage)(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 25 Jul 2018 at 10:12    Image of day on 14 Sep 2018

This year has seen the numbers of this pretty little Common Blue Butterfly rise from an occasional one at a time to several in the hedge at once.


Ref: 20180914_df3_20180725_1012_025 common blue butterfly feeding on blackberry flower(r+mb id@768).jpg


Image Taken on 13 Aug 2017 at 12:26    Image of day on 01 Oct 2017

This is a Common Blue Butterfly, for all that her wings are brown. You can see a blue haze of hairs over her body.


Ref: 20171001_df3_20170813_1226_088 common blue butterfly female (damaged right wing) feeding on knapweed(r+mb id@768).jpg


Image Taken on 30 Jul 2014 at 11:11    Image of day on 12 Oct 2014

The female Common Blue butterfly has brown tops to her wings with a 'dashing' orange border the male does without. As you can see the species is very fond of feeding on ground level clover flowers that spring up after mowing.


Ref: 20141012_df2_20140730_1111_002 common blue butterfly female feeding on clover flower(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 20 Aug 2010 at 12:19    Image of day on 28 Sep 2010

Here you can see this female Common Blue butterfly reaching to the bottom of the flower rather than the more visible anthers it is standing on.


Ref: 20100928_db1_20100820_1219_203 common blue butterfly female side view on blackberry flower(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 20 Aug 2010 at 12:16    Image of day on 27 Sep 2010

The female common blues do not usually display there brown upper wing surface in the way that the males do. Here we see her basking for a moment.


Ref: 20100927_db1_20100820_1216_113 common blue butterfly female top view on blackberry flower (crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 20 Aug 2010 at 12:17    Image of day on 28 Sep 2010

This one suddenly uncoiled her proboscis to reach into the nectaries of a bramble flower. We have never noticed one reaching out sideways like this before from one flower to reach another


Ref: 20100928_db1_20100820_1217_170+172+173 common blue butterfly female uncoiling proboscis to reach across to flower 1-3 of 3 (montage)(r+mb id@768).jpg


Image Taken on 06 Aug 2010 at 08:41    Image of day on 06 Sep 2010

The Common Blue butterflies are seen over our 'meadow' intermittently during the year Here are two views of an individual that stayed for a few minutes before doing the 'vanishing trick'.


Ref: 20100906_df1_20100806_0841_017 common blue butterfly male bottom side (crop)(r+mb id@768).jpg


Image Taken on 30 Jul 2014 at 12:31    Image of day on 12 Oct 2014

When we walk down the meadow path little flakes of sky (thank you Magritte for popularising the notion) flutter away from us, never reaching higher than about a metre from the ground. Only the male Common Blue butterfly has the blue top to the wings.


Ref: 20141012_df2_20140730_1231_011 common blue butterfly male feeding on clover flower(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 19 Aug 2011 at 12:43    Image of day on 08 Oct 2011

We still have several blue butterflies on the plot whenever the sun comes out. Here a Common Blue male feeding on a nearly finished clover flower.


Ref: 20111008_df1_20110819_1243_363 common blue butterfly male feeding on clover flower(r+mb id@768).jpg


Image Taken on 24 Aug 2011 at 12:15    Image of day on 08 Oct 2011

The dominant meadow flower at the moment is the Purple Loosestrife. Here a male Common Blue butterfly sips up some nectar


Ref: 20111008_df1_20110824_1215_045 common blue butterfly male feeding on purple loosestrife flower(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 21 Sep 2010 at 13:02    Image of day on 14 Nov 2010

A common Blue butterfly male feeding on some ragwort flowers. Its a bit faded on both sides - signs of a life well spent in the sunshine? If he has a memory for such things (pretty unlikely!) he is going to be disappointed to find it gone later in the day after a grass cut (its was growing in a grass walk). We don't let poisonous Ragwort seed in this cattle country anyway. The yellow buddleia (which flowers until first frost) will have to do.


Ref: 20101114_df1_20100921_1302_041 common blue butterfly male feeding on ragwort (crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 20 Aug 2010 at 12:35    Image of day on 27 Sep 2010

The main image is a lucky (if spending an hour trying is 'luck') single frame of a male Common blue butterfly spotting a female and coming over to try his luck! The bottom 2 show her turning round, and then him trying to couple with her. They flew off in a blur without coupling (but may have elsewhere).


Ref: 20100927_db1_20100820_1235_269+272+280 common blue butterfly male flies to female on blackberry flower & attempts to mate 01+04+12 of 17 (montage)(r+mb id@1024).jpg


Image Taken on 31 May 2011 at 12:28    Image of day on 01 Jul 2011

A couple of portraits of an immaculate male Common Blue butterfly as it flew around our 'meadow'.


Ref: 20110701_df1_20110531_1228_075 common blue butterfly male on buttercup (crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 16 May 2011 at 16:23    Image of day on 11 Jun 2011

Following an unusually good showing of Holly Blue butterflies in April, we now have the Common Blue butterfly - here the male which actually does have a blue top to the wings (unlike the females brown).


Ref: 20110611_df1_20110516_1623_015 common blue butterfly male on buttercup (crop)(r+mb id@768).jpg


Image Taken on 31 May 2011 at 12:32    Image of day on 01 Jul 2011

By now the Common Blue butterfly had moved on to a patch of clover.


Ref: 20110701_df1_20110531_1232_127 common blue butterfly male on clover flower(r+mb id@576).jpg


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