Saturday, 15 August 2009

Comma In Our Garden

Comma Butterfly

Polygonia c-album

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The 'Comma' butterfly is one of our more attractive species. This is the first time in over 25 years that I have seen it in my garden. I like this butterfly for two reasons..... its shape and its colour.

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When basking in the sun it spreads its wings to reveals a beautiful combination of brown and orange, the markings are similar to our Fritillary butterfles. If you take a good look at the wings you will see the edges have an intricate outline.

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This wing design is a great bit of deception and camouflage. As when the wings are closed the butterfly looks just like a dead leaf.

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The butterfly has a flexible life cycle, which allows it to take advantage of our weather conditions. It is widespread in southern England and is expanding northwards which is proberly why this is the first time I've had one in the garden.

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The most widely used foodplant is Common Nettles Hop, elms, currants, and willows. It has two generations a year and will overwinter as an adult.. and why is it called a Comma?

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Look closely at the butterfly’s under wing and you will see the comma-shaped white mark in the centre of its hind wing which is the reason for its common name.

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Linda, you asked about Mottram Old Hall and what I knew of it... can you send me an email... or give me a while to visit it and get some pictures... I know little about the place apart from Mottran show is held there. I do however have a couple of books in PDF format I could send you or a link or two for you to download them from.

11 comments:

Dina said...

The angles of your photos really give a feeling of the butterfly's delicate beauty.

Tom, could you please swing by my blog and help identify a strange worm/caterpillar? I've never seen such a thing.

Dina said...

Thanks a lot, Tom! I was searching too, but I didn't know what to call it. I'll check now with the names you gave me.

SandyCarlson said...

It's good to see one thrive. They are struggling here. That is a beauty, Tom.

Patty said...

Beautiful photos. Happy week-end.

Rose said...

I love the shape of the wings as much as the colors...

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Tom: What a neat butterfly, it is one we also have here.

maryt/theteach said...

What a beautiful shot, Tom! I'm sorry I haven't been over to Paintbox Pictures in a while... I plan to go there today. :)

Babooshka said...

Hats off to you on the butterfly shots. Commas we do tend to have a lot of and lately painted ladies (butterflies I hasten to add.)

PERBS said...

I can see why you like tht butterfly so much! I do too. . . I saw soemthin about a bench belwo so going to check out that post also . . .

Your EG Tour Guide said...

What a coincidence! I took a photo of a comma or perhaps a question mark (they look a lot alike) today too. I haven't downloaded the photo yet so I don't know if I actually captured it or not though.

imac said...

Really got that Nature bug Tom, these are perfect shot mate.