Tag Archives: Holly blue

Holly Blues at Lorton Meadows

Two butterflies with pale blue underwings in mating pose

Holly Blues mating. Photo: George McCabe

George saw this mating pair of Holly Blues at Lorton Meadowns on 05/07/2017.

This is the second brood of the Holly Blue this year. The offspring of this mating will progress to the chrysalis stage, and spend the winter in a crevice or on the ground. A lot of butterflies and moths will be found in non-adult stages in leaf litter, so when you sweep up your patio, think about putting the sweepings somewhere out of the way, rather than burying them in your compost heap.

Two Holly Blues joined together, seen sideways on

Holly Blues mating. Photo: Dave Law

Dave says: “Considering Holly Blues were quite scarce last summer its great to see them almost everywhere around North Dorset . This pair were seen at Compton Down [on 19/04/2017] along with several Green Hairstreak and plenty of Speckled Wood. However across the valley on Fontmell Down it appears worryingly lifeless within the boundaries of the fencing. Only a few Grizzled Skippers seen and hardly any nectar sources plus cattle grazing still going on ! Outside the boundaries plenty of cowslip, daisy and hawkweeds . Hope it rapidly improves “.

Holly Blue at Harman’s Cross

Side shot of a Holly Blue on a leaf, looking rather ragged

Holly Blue. Photo: Brian Arnold

Brian says: “In my garden at Harman’s Cross late this afternoon [9 June] there was a rather “Late in Season” Holly Blue that must have been out for a while. When I saw it at a distance I assumed it was a Common Blue but when it got closer it was much too pale a blue colour so had to be a Holly Blue.”

Holly Blue Winton

Holly Blue butterfly with open wings on a bright blue flwoer.

Holly Blue. Photo: Mel Bray

Mel says: “I get Holly Blues in my garden in Winton (Bournemouth) every year – this is an early one. Followed it around a while to get the open wing shot – it was taking the sun, probably very fresh. The plant is alkanet (aka green alkanet) – they usually start to flower a short time before the Holly Blues arrive.

An old chap (nowdeceased) who had lived all his life in the same house just down the road used to say that when the little blue butterflies arrive you know it is spring. It must be at least 80 years that the Holly Blues have been here. I like to think of that continuity.

They appeared about a week ago on one of the sunny days – suddenly there were six of them!!! Some of them were fluttering around in pairs. I was so relieved to see them – they are often around in early April.”