Saturday, 25 July 2009

More Insects

More flying things today. To begin with, a gorgeous, bright blue little jewel found fluttering around the clover this morning. The Common Blue Butterfly (Polyommatus icarus).
Europe's most common blue butterfly and not always easy to distinguish from the many other 'Blues', it's favourite food plants are the pea family including clovers, trefoils, Medicks and Restharrows.
Next, a larger butterfly - the Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui).
This one was too preoccupied with sipping nectar from the Hemp Agrimony plants growing along the banks of the old Nutbrook Canal in Shipley Park to be bothered by me pointing my camera at it. With a wingspan reaching 3" it is about twice the size of the Common Blue.
A less conspicuous insect to finish today's posting. Indeed, you cannot even see it! Only the presence of small, red, blisters on the surface of the leaves of the Crack Willow trees give them away. We have all seen these 'galls' on willow leaves but did you know they contain the larva of the Willow Sawfly (Pontania proxima)?
The tiny grubs inside these galls will eventually break out and metamorphose into equally small, black wasp-like insects.
Post a Comment