Kiss me! (12)
|To understand the title, look at the WS.|
Happy Easter to the members of TN !
Today was a very cloudy day, I met only one butterfly, but really friendly. And it was a great surprise, because in general this species is very hysterical and difficult to photograph.
Species: A. cardamines
The Orange Tip (Anthocharis cardamines) is a butterfly in the Pieridae family.
So named because of the male's bright orange tips to his forewings. The males are a common sight in spring flying along hedgerows and damp meadows in search of the more reclusive female which lacks the orange and is often mistaken for one of the other 'White' butterflies. The undersides are mottled green and white and create a superb camouflage when settled on flowerheads such as Cow Parsley and Garlic Mustard Alliaria petiolata. The male is able to hide his orange tips by tucking the forwings behind the hindwings at rest. If you look closely at the mottling you will see that the green colour is in fact made up of a mixture of black and yellow scales. It is found across Europe, and eastwards into temperate Asia as far as Japan. The past 30 years has seen a rapid increase in the range of the Orange Tip in the UK particularly in Scotland and Ireland, probably in response to climate change.
The female lays eggs singly on the flowerheads of Cuckooflower Cardimine pratensis and Garlic Mustard and many other species of wild Crucifers, all of which contain chemicals called glucosinolates. Females are attracted to larger flowers, such as Hesperis matronalis, even though some such species are poor larval hosts. Selection of foodplants is triggered by the presence of mustard oils, which are detected by chemosensory hairs on the fore-legs (is this really true? or is it glucosinolates that are stimulatory? This contributor has not been able to find a reference for the statement of a stimulatory effect of mustard oils). Reproductive rate of females appears to be limited by difficulties in finding suitable hosts. As a consequence, the species has evolved to use a wide range of crucifers. The eggs are white to begin with but change to a bright orange after a few days before darkening off just before hatching. Because the larvae feed almost exclusively on the flowers and developing seedpods there is rarely enough food to support more than one larva per plant. If two larvae meet one will often be eaten by the other to eliminate its competitor. Newly hatched larvae will also eat unhatched eggs for the same reason. To stop eggs from being laid on plants already laid on the female leaves a pheromone to deter future females from laying. There are five larval instars. The green and white caterpillar is attacked by several natural enemies (notably Tachinid flies and Braconid wasps). Pupation occurs in early summer in scrubby vegetation near the foodplant, where they stay to emerge the following spring. Recent research suggests that the emergence of the butterfly may be delayed for as much as two years, thus ensuring the species against unfavourable conditions in a given season. Some Orange Tip may be confused with moths.
Damp pastures and meadows, damp woodland edges and glades, riverbanks, ditches, dykes, fens, railway cuttings and country lanes.
Anthocharis cardamines (Linnaeus 1758) Aurora
Oggi è stata una giornata molto nuvolosa, ho incontrato una sola farfalla, ma davvero amichevole. Ed è stata una grande sorpresa, perchè in genere questa specie è molto isterica e difficile da fotografare.Date un'occhiata al WS per capire..
Farfalla di medie dimensioni (apertura alare 40-50 mm) dalla colorazione di fondo bianca. I maschi evidenziano la metà esterna delle ali anteriori di un vivace colore arancione, mentre le femmine presentano solamente una bordatura apicale nera e margine esterno molto arrotondato. Le ali posteriori mostrano nei due sessi disegni verdastri con spolverature gialle.
Il suo ciclo biologico mostra una sola generazione primaverile. La crisalide, svernante e di tipo succinto, appare inconfondibile per via della forma carenata e per un prominente processo cefalico. I bruchi, verde pallido o verde bluastro dorsalmente e biancastri lateralmente, si nutrono di Crucifere (gen. Cardamine, Sisymbrium, Sinapis ecc.) sulle quali si mimetizzano confondendosi con le silique.
Distribuzione ed ecologia
Presente in gran parte dell'Europa, salvo Iberia meridionale e Scandinavia settentrionale. In Italia la si ritrova abbastanza comunemente fin quasi i 2000 m. Nel circondario si riscontra con maggiore frequenza in eucalipteti e radure boschive.