Thursday, 31 May 2007

The Blues

I spent some time searching a grassy bank near the monument. It is a great place for Butterflies and at the right time it is possible to see four species of Blues, although so far this year there's been just one. In addition, a non chalkland grass species, the Holly Blue can be seen on nearby hedges.
Above is a male Common Blue and below is a female, some of the females have very little blue colour.
The female has a row of spots on the hind wing, and is quite brown overall.

As well as butterflies there were several day flying moths. Above is a Burnet Companion, it is a similar size to the blue and I think is a quite attractive moth.

This small chap, Pyrausta aurata, doesn't have a common name, it's only about 15 mm across but can be seen on the Bird's-foot Trefoil in full sunshine.

While I was searching up an down this grass bank I was accompanied by this Whitethroat. Most of the time he joyfully sang his rather scratchy song, but sometimes he gave his hoarse "chrrrrr chrrrrr" alarm call. When he did this he puffed out his white throat.

Along the top of the Lees several pairs of Linnets were busy and perched up on the hedge opposite where I was photographing. Male Linnets have got it sorted. They follow the females around and sing a lot, but it appears she does most of the work!
The Blue Tits, nesting outside my study, fledged today.

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