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Icarusblauwtje (Polyommatus icarus)

Icarusblauwtje (Polyommatus icarus)
Photo Information
Copyright: Thijs van Balen jr (Pentaxfriend) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 514 W: 24 N: 1888] (8048)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-05-23
Categories: Insects
Camera: Pentax *ist DL, Tamron SP 90mm F/2.8 Macro 1:1, Digital ISO 200, 55mm B+W Skylight KR1,5
Exposure: f/16, 1/125 seconds
Details: (Fill) Flash: Yes
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2007-06-08 23:50
Viewed: 2701
Points: 10
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Superfamily: Papilionoidea
Family: Lycaenidae
Subfamily: Polyommatinae
Tribe: Polyommatini
Genus: Polyommatus
Species: P. icarus
Binomial name: Polyommatus icarus (Rottemburg, 1775)

The Common Blue (Polyommatus icarus) is a small butterfly in the family Lycaenidae.

Appearance, behaviour and distribution:

Male uppersides are an iridescent lilac blue with a thin black border. Females are brown with a row of red spots along the edges. They usually have some blue at the base of the wings and quite often, especially in Ireland and Scotland, are mostly blue but always have the red spots. Undersides have a greyish ground colour in the males and more brownish in the females. Both sexes have a row of red spots along the edge of the hindwings (extending onto the forewings though generally fainter, particularly in the males where they are sometimes missing altogether). There are about a dozen black centered white spots on the hind wings, nine on the forwings. The white fringe on the outer edge of the wings is not crossed with black lines as it is in the Chalkhill and Adonis Blues, an important difference when separating these species, particularly the females.

It is Britain's (and probably Europe's) most common and most widespread blue, found as far north as Orkney and on most of the Outer Hebrides. Males are often very obvious as they defend territories against rivals and search out the more reclusive females. A range of grassland habitats are used: meadows, coastal dunes, woodland clearings and also many man made habitats, anywhere where their foodplants are found.

It is Widespread in Europe, North Africa and temperate Asia.

Lifecycle and foodplants:

The Main foodplant on most sites is Birds-foot-trefoil Lotus corniculatus. Others used include Black Medick Medicago lupulina, Common Restharrow Ononis repens, White Clover Trifolium repens and Lesser Trefoil Trifolium dubium. Eggs are laid singly on young shoots of their foodplants.

The caterpillar is small, pale green with yellow stripes and as usual with lycid larvae rather sluglike. Hibernation occurs as a half grown larvae. They are attractive to ants but not as much as some other species of blues. The chrysalis is olive green/brown and formed on the ground where it is attended by ants which will often take it into their nests. The larvae creates a substance called honey dew, which the ants eat while the butterfly lives in the ant hill. In the south of Britain there are two broods a year flying in May and June and again in August and September. Northern England has one brood flying between June and September. In a long warm year there is sometimes a partial third brood in the south flying into October.

Het icarusblauwtje is een veel voorkomende vlindersoort. Het lijkt op het esparcetteblauwtje, maar onderscheidt zich van deze door twee wortelvlekken op de onderkant van de voorvleugels. Het komt voor op de meeste typen graslanden, van vrij droge schrale graslanen tot matig vochtige hooilanden. Het vrouwtje zet de eitjes af op veel soorten vlinderbloemigen, onder andere Lotus corniculatus (gewone rolklaver). De rups voedt zich met de bladeren. Ze wordt veelvuldig bezocht door mieren van de geslachten Lasius , Formica , Myrmica , Tapinoma en Plagiolepis . Als ze halfvolgroeid is, kan ze in de strooisellaag overwinteren. In hete klimaten vindt ook overzomering als ei of rups plaats. De verpopping gebeurt in de strooisellaag. Het icarusblauwtje vliegt afhankelijk va de geografische ligging en de hoogte van het vliegterrein in een tot drie generaties per jaar.

Droge zure graslanden
Droog kalkgrasland en steppe
Matig voedselrijk grasland

Wijdverbreid en algemeen in heel Europa. Plaatselijk op de Canarische eilanden. Ontbreekt op Madeira en de Azoren. Vliegt van zeeniveau tot bijna 3000m hoogte.

april, mei, juni, jul

uleko, GLEM has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • iris Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 479 W: 60 N: 970] (3088)
  • [2007-06-09 1:29]

Hello Thijs,
Fantastic PoV showing a Common Blue.The details are great on the wings, and the BG looks absolutley wonderful in the contrast.The diagonal positioning of its perch adds to the beauty of the shot.
TFS & Cheers

parfaitement presenté,le POV est tres bon(de face cela aurait été encore mieux)le BG bien flou.
le papillon est net et ses couleurs naturelles.
bon travail aussi sur le cadre.

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2007-06-09 4:26]

Hello Thijs,
Beautiful composition in browns showing this Common Blue from a nice low POV. Great sharpness and fine colours. Well done!
TFS and regards, Ulla

  • Great 
  • GLEM Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 540 W: 87 N: 750] (10)
  • [2007-06-09 10:56]

hello Thijs
belle image de ce papillon. J'aime bien la diagonale, la couleur foncée et saturée.


  • Great 
  • pvb Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 385 W: 16 N: 531] (1981)
  • [2007-06-09 11:37]

Hi Thijs,
Toch raar dat ze voor het vrouwtje van deze soort toch zo'n naam hebben gekozen? Mooie hoek en compositie met veel scherpte en details. Prachtige achtergrond en kleuren.
gr. Paula

  • OzBY Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 183 W: 2 N: 351] (1355)
  • [2007-06-14 11:14]

Hello Thijs,

Great picture of this butterfly.
Great color, sharpness, DOF, position and background.


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