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Small Copper / Lycaena phlaeas

Small Copper / Lycaena phlaeas
Photo Information
Copyright: nuri senemek (senn) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 58 W: 2 N: 155] (1384)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2013-10-12
Categories: Insects
Camera: Pentax K-5 IIs, Pentax 300mm f/4 ED IF SDM SMC DA*
Exposure: f/7.1, 1/800 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2013-10-24 15:19
Viewed: 2067
Points: 28
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
The Small Copper, American Copper, or the Common Copper (Lycaena phlaeas) is a butterfly of the Lycaenids or gossamer-winged butterfly family. According to Guppy and Shepard (2001), its specific name phlaeas is said to be derived either from the Greek Phlego, "to burn up" or from the Latin Floreo, "to flourish".

The upperside forewings are a bright orange with a dark outside edge border and with eight or nine black spots. The hindwings are dark with an orange border. Some females also have a row of blue spots inside the orange border and are known as form caeruleopunctata. The undersides are patterned in a similar way but are paler. The black spots on the forewings are outlined in yellow and the dark colouring is replaced by a pale brownish, gray. The hindwings are the same brown/grey colour with small black dots and a narrow orange border. The caterpillars (larvae) are usually green, but some have a purple stripe down the middle of the back and along each side.

It is widespread and common across Europe, Asia, and North America, and also found in North Africa south through to Ethiopia.
It can be found almost anywhere in south/central England and Wales although never, it seems, in large numbers. Its distribution becomes more patchy in northern England, Scotland and Ireland.

It is found in a wide variety range of habitats from chalk downlands, heathland, woodland clearings to churchyards and waste ground in cities.

In bright sun it is a very active little butterfly with the males setting up small territories which they will defend vigorously against rival males or indeed any unlucky passing insect. Even the shadow of a large bird passing overhead is enough to elicit a response. Females are pursued and mating usually occurs low down in vegetation.

The eggs are laid singly and conspicuously on the upperside of foodplant leaves and the young caterpillar feeds on the underside of the leaf creating "windows" by leaving the upper epidermis of the leaf untouched. Pupation takes place in the leaf litter and the pupa is thought to be tended by ants. There are between two and three broods a year, fewer further north. In exceptionally good years, a fourth brood sometimes occurs in the south and adults can still be seen flying into November. The species overwinters as a caterpillar.

Depending on the habitat, Common Sorrel (Rumex acetosa) and Sheep's Sorrel (Rumex acetosella) are the two main food-plants, although other Docks (Rumex spp.) are occasionally used.


tuslaw, ramthakur, Hotelcalifornia, anel, KOMSIS, Miss_Piggy has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2013-10-24 17:42]

Hello Nuri,
I really like your photo of this pretty little Copper Butterfly. You have captured it with wings fully opened, allowing us to see it's beautiful markings and vivid colors.
I didn't see the large numbers of butterflies this year like I have in the past. This is probably due to the fact that the field beside the house that is normally planted in Red Clover was planted in Soy Beans this year.

Your picture of this Copper is beautiful, Nuri. The open wings show the typical markings on them quite clearly. The colours too are lovely.
The only thing I find odd is excessive space behind the main subject.

Very well captured image of this Copper Butterfly
I like it Nuri for its beautiful composition and colour.
best wishes,

Ciao Nuri, great macro of lovely small butterfly on beautiful blurry BG, fine details, wonderful natural colors and splendid sharpness, very well done, my friend, ciao Silvio

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2013-10-25 0:28]

Hello Nuri.
Well composed, good clear detail, sharp and nicely saturated colour. Looks great against the dark BG. Regards Siggi

Hello Mr.Nuri,
First time in your picture gallery attracting by this beautiful Butterfly.
I like the way you have given space to this specie.It seems very much natural with authentic colour and sharpness.Like dark BG which helps to concentrate on subject.
Thanks for sharing,
Regards and have a nice time,

hallo Nuri
very nice composition with beautiful colours
thanks greeting lou

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2013-10-25 8:48]

Hi Nuri,excellent capture of one of the last species of this year,waiting the winter.I like a lot this artistic way to show us the small copper,a beautiful decentralized composition,fantastic details and colors in the best DOF and a lot of space for this abstract peinture made by the blurred background.Have a nice weekend and thanks,Luciano

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2013-10-25 11:31]

Bonsoir Nuri,
De temps à autre tu nous montres un papillon, celui-ci est un très joli modèle.La lumière est tombée parfaitement sur ses ailes et illumine joliment ce petit cuivré.
Tu as choisi une "composition" horizontale assez généreuse, une démarche assez intéressante. D'autres auraient cadré de manière plus serrée.
Bonne soirée

  • Great 
  • iti Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 577 W: 0 N: 650] (7939)
  • [2013-10-26 9:46]

Hi Nuri,
Another very nice photo,butterfly is from a greater distance than usual but the composition is beautiful. Amazing colors
with nicely blurred background.
Have a good weekend
Regards Jiri.

  • Great 
  • KOMSIS Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 820 W: 0 N: 2419] (10674)
  • [2013-10-28 10:02]

Nuri bey selamlar,
Farklı ve güzel bir açıdan, tam kanatüstü kompozisyon yakalmışsınız ..
Sarı çiçek üzerinde, Benekli Bakır kelebeği, renkleri ve detayları ile çok güzel görünüyor.
Emeklerinize sağlık,

Beautiful photo Nuri. Good composition, wonderful colours and very good sharpness.

Hallo Nuri
I can understand why this butterfly is called a Small Copper because it surely is very tiny and dwarfs away in the big frame. I like this photo. The colours are natural and the pose of the butterfly is pleasant. Although tiny all details on the wings are beautifully seen. Best regards and thanks for sharing.


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