Saturday, 31 October 2015

Clouded Yellow, early stages, pupa, butterfly [part 2]

The Clouded Yellow pupa stage lasts between 2-3 weeks depending on the weather, hot, cold etc. but it makes a few body/colour changes along the way until the butterfly finally emerges.
Clouded Yellow 5th instar larva ready to pupate
4 hours later the pupation stage of the life cycle is well under way
Two days later the Clouded Yellow pupa has taken on a yellowish/green appearance
4 days into pupation, the Clouded Yellow pupa is now a lovely green and, stays this
colour for about a week
The Clouded Yellow pupa 4 days before the emergence of the butterfly 
Clouded Yellow pupa two days before the emergence of the butterfly, which can now be clearly
identified as a female
The empty pupal casing after the Clouded Yellow has emerged
Female Clouded Yellow
Male Clouded Yellow

Clouded Yellow, early stages, ovum, larva [part 1]

The Clouded Yellow is a frequent visiter to our shores especially in the south of England in small numbers but, some years can produce very large influxes of these butterflies, crossing the English Channel in early Spring. Once mated, the females will normally start laying their ovum in May and the resulting butterflies from these eggs will go on to produce a second brood, flying Late September, early October.
The female Clouded Yellows will normally lay their eggs on Red Clover and Bird's-foot Trefoil two of the commoner plants used in the United Kingdom.
The ovum is a yellowy/white when first laid, normallyon the underside of the chosen leaf
After about 4 days the ovum turns an orangey/redin colour
The tiny 1st instar Clouded Yellow larva emerges after about 7 days, once the ovum has
 turned a bluey/grey
1st instar Clouded Yellow larva showing typical feeding damage to the Clover leaf
by a 1st instar caterpillar
Late 2nd instar Clouded Yellow larva devours the leaf from the top, and works its way down
3rd instar Clouded Yellow larva, when the Clouded Yellow larva passes it's droppings [Frass]
the larva fires it from it's abdomen like a cannon ball getting it as far away from the larva as possible
as the Frass gives off an odour and, so it helps to prevent predators from detecting the
whereabouts of the caterpillar
4th instar Clouded Yellow larva
5th instar preparing for pupation, the larval stage lasts about 4 weeks

Thursday, 29 October 2015


The Wall was once found over much of Southern England, but now normally only found around the British coastland.
Female Wall on Scabious
Female Wall showing the tops of her wings

Monday, 26 October 2015

Bath White, Turkey

Once a common butterfly in Britain, but now sadly extinct. This species was a much prized, and collected butterfly by the victorians, which brought the downfall of this butterfly. But it is still very widespread in Europe.
This female Bath White had only just emerged when i found her

Sunday, 25 October 2015

Lattice Brown

Lattice Brown, Turkey. Normally found flying on the fringes of woodland. The best time to photograph them is early to mid-morning.

Lattice Brown male
Lattice Brown female

Saturday, 24 October 2015

Lang's Short-tailed Blue, female

Female Lang's Short-tailed Blue, Portugal
Female Lang's Short-tailed Blue feeding on Sticky Fleebane
Posing beautifully
Resting on Sticky Fleebane

Mallow Skipper

Mallow Skipper, Turkey
Light form female
Dark form  female

Sunday, 18 October 2015

Crimson-speckled moth

The Crimson-speckled moth [Footman] is a rare migrant to our shores and normally found on the southern coastline of England when they do appear mostly in the Autumn. They are commonly found in southern Europe, Spain and Portugal in particular. In Portugal they can quite commonly be found on the yellow flower, Dittrichia Viscosa, a daisy, commonly known as False Yellowhead, Yellow, Sticky and Woody Fleebane. Sexes are similar.
Crimson-speckled moth having just landed
Crimson-speckled moth feeding on Dittrichia Viscosa
Crimson-speckled moth feeding on Dittrichia Viscosa
Crimson-speckled moth at rest
Crimson-speckled moth at rest
Crimson-speckled moth in flight, just about the hardest photo i have taken 
I was lucky to have found this freshly emerged Crimson-speckled moth, which is still
drying out

Geranium Bronze, female

The Geranium Bronze is a small butterfly found in Northern Africa and Southern Europe where it breeds all year round. This beautiful little butterfly has on occasion turned up on our shores, normally being carried here in amongst imported Geranium plants.
Female Geranium Bronze
Female Geranium Bronze
Female Geranium Bronze
Female Geranium Bronze