Return to moorhen home page

Butterflies - 3

Small Tortoiseshell ButterflyThe Small Tortoiseshell was abundant here for the first 10 years, but in 2004 & 2005 has become an occasional siting. The Large Tortoiseshell we have never seen anywhere. It is seen on flowering garden plants, but our favourite site is flowering bramble hedges in late summer.

This multiflash photograph is of one butterfly in free flight, timed to flash at about each half wingbeat.

Common Blue ButterflyThe 'Common Blue' Butterfly really is fairly common, but we seldom see them because they prefer the plants that are found on chalky soils (exactly what our heavy clay is not).

The colour variation is quite large, varying from almost brown as in this photo, to quite light blue.

Orange Tip ButterflyThe Orange Tip Butterfly is an early spring visitor that has a preference for flowers such as wild garlic.

This is a male. The femal doesn't have the orange wing tips but does have the fantastic dappled white and green underwing.

Our experience is that they seem to fly almost continuously, and fly off immediately when approached while feeding. Thus we have more and better pictures of them in flight, using our infrared beam triggered equipment, than sitting quietly on a flower.

Small Blue ButterflyWe first saw a Small Copper butterfly in July 2005. This one alighted on a buttercup flower you can see at the top. The blobs to the upper left and right are rabbit droppings.