Tag Archives: Brimstone

View of a dark blue butterfly resting on some green vegetation

Small Blue. Photo: Brian Arnold

View of three butterflies - one white and two greenish yellow in some green vegetation

Brimstones. Photo: Brian Arnold

On a trip to Badbury Rings yesterday, 19/05/2020 Brian told us that he saw lots of butterflies including three Small Blues and two different sets of Brimstones.  He has sent us a couple of photos one of the Small Blue and one of three Brimstones about which Brian commented:

two males and a female where the female was rejecting the male, but sitting with wings open! most unusual.

View of a greenish yellow butterfly nectaring on a mauve flower.

Brimstone. Photo: Ann Barlow

Ann has sent us this photo taken in her Corfe Mullen Garden telling us that although she has seen a number of Brimstones about in recent days, not one of them was prepared to land and be photographed.  The photographic quest was finally completed when one visited an Erysimum Bowles’ Mauve to feed this morning, 07/04/2020.  A lovely combination of colours.

View of a greenish yellow butterfly resting on a timber shed.

Brimstone. Photo: Shona Refoy

View of a greenish yellow butterfly nectaring on a yellow Primrose.

Brimstone. Photo: Shona Refoy          

Shona has sent us these photos of Brimstones with the following comments:

I’ve decided that while I’m spending so much time in my Broadstone garden, a suitable project is to try to get photos of all the species I see here. Last week the Peacocks were very obliging, but the Brimstones were all on a mission!  However yesterday, 05/04/2020 my luck changed, and this male spent some time sitting in the sunshine on my shed, before flying round me several times and disappearing next door. An hour or two later, this female flew around the garden, then nectared on some Primroses. Seeing the photos together makes the colour difference between the male and female quite plain to see.

View of red butterfly with with white, blue and black markings on wings

Peacock. Photo: Shona Refoy

View of a yellow butterfly with a few brown specks on the wings.

Brimstone. Photo: Shona Refoy

Shona’s continuing search for her second butterfly for 2020 was rewarded yesterday, 16/03/2020 when she saw butterflies at Badbury Rings for the first time this year. The Peacock (her first one of this species this year) was basking on a log, enjoying the sunshine as much as she was!  The Brimstone she told us was having a cleaning session amongst the ivy and then flew into High Wood.

green underwings of a butterfly camouflaged against the leaf it is resting on

Brimstone. Photo: Mark Pike

seven caterpillars with beige hairsand  black faces on the outside of  their web

Marsh Fritillary Caterpillars. Photo: Mark Pike

Mark commented that this female Brimstone was so well camouflaged against the leaf she settled on at Alners Gorse  when he visited the reserve on 29/07/19.

Not so were the caterpillars of the Marsh Fritillary butterfly which is found at Alners Gorse,. The mite, trombidium breei seen on one of the caterpillars is often found on butterflies and other insects but apparently does them no harm.

A white and a yellow butterfly on a bush

Brimstones. Photo: Shona Refoy

Shona was delighted to get this shot of a female Brimstone refusing to mate with the male, as it was her first ever shot of a stationery female Brimstone upperwing. Taken at Badbury Rings on 10/05/2019.

When a female butterfly has already mated, she will refuse further male advances: she needs to get on with laying her eggs, which she will do on the bush in the photograph, which is a buckthorn. She shows her refusal by having her wings open and raising up her abdomen, often with the genitalia extruded.