Tag Archives: Martin Down

View of two brown and blue butterflies with orange, black and white markings whilst mating

Common Blues mating. Photo: Donald Simcock

close up view of a pale brown butterfly with black, white and orange markings mating

Common Blues mating (close up), Photo: Donald Simcock

Donald has sent us these remarkable photos of Common Blue butterflies mating with the following comments.  Warning – one is a close up photo:

We were walking over Martin Down on Thursday 30/07/2020 and saw lots of butterflies including Grizzled Skipper but these were all in Hampshire. By mid afternoon with forays on and off the Bokerley Ditch we found ourselves in Dorset and saw 3 Dark-green Fritillaries, 3 Small Tortoiseshell and these Common blues mating. I could get really close and saw the bright orange parts which I am thinking is the male sexual organ. A lovely walk on a spectacular site of landscape proportion.

One brown butterfly with yellow rings on the wings and one greyish brown butterfly mating on a green plant

Ringlet and Meadow Brown. Photo: Mark Pike

Two butterflies, one brown with yellow rings and the other greyish brown resting on a persons finger

Ringlet and Meadow Brown. Photo: Mark Pike

Two more photos from Mark sent with the following comments:

Apologies John for rushing off this morning, 24/06/2020. Mind you I am glad I did as I was going to Martin Down but I was certainly never prepared for this bizarre sight!

I realise Martin Down is mostly in Hants but where I photographed these was quite literally on the county border, so they may well have been just in Dorset! To be honest I couldn’t resist sending it to you. Believe it or not this is a Ringlet and Meadow Brown mating. Perhaps we should be on the lookout for Meadowlets at some point?!

Two pale blue butterflies with black spots on the wings mating on a green leaf

Small Blues. Photo: Shona Refoy

Shona sent us this photo she took on 25/05/2020 with the following comments:

Yesterday, I went to Martin Down, and was walking along the middle of Bokerley Ditch, when one of the many Small Blues drew my attention to this mating pair. They were on the Dorset side of the Ditch, so I think they are entitled to a place in the Gallery (unlike the other pair, on the opposite side of the ditch)!

view of a Large Skipper on a grass seedhead showing undersides of fore-wing

Large Skipper. Photo: Brian Mallard

Brian photographed this Large Skipper on 18/06/18 at Martin Down.

This one is showing the diagnostic markings on the undersides of the fore-wings. Large Skippers fly from June -August in one brood, favouring grassy , bushy places with an abundance of ferns .

Both sexes are strongly attracted to bramble blossom and will often rest and bask on its leaves.