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Polyommatus icarus female

Polyommatus icarus female
Photo Information
Copyright: Harm Alberts (Harm-digitaal) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 110 W: 7 N: 1968] (7604)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-09-09
Categories: Insects
Camera: Canon EOS 40 D, Canon EF 180mm f/3.5L USM Macro
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Theme(s): European Butterflies 8 [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2008-11-01 5:10
Viewed: 3081
Points: 5
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note [Dutch]
Polyommatus icarus female / Common Blue female / Gemeiner Bläuling oder Hauheckel-Bläuling weibchen / L'Argus Bleu ou L'Azuré de la bugrane femelle / Icarus blauwtje vrouwtje.

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

Appearance, behaviour and distribution
Male uppersides are a beautiful 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 Britains (and probably Europe's) commonest and most widespread blue, Found as far north as the Orkneys 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 foodplans 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. 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.


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Critiques [Translate]

Hello Harm,
An excellent portrayal of the female Common Blue intently feeding. Colours and details are all very fine. However, the composition seems to make more emphasis on the flower with the butterfly far off to one side almost as an afterthought. So I have made a rough workshop which I think makes the picture more about the butterfly. Thanks anyway for a fine photo.

hallo Harm
schitterende foto ,die haartjes op de vleugels doen het erg goed
mooi op die witte klaver
groetjes lou

Wat 'n mooie foto!!

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