And a flash of orange…

Today I have spent most of the day on the Common taking photos of butterflies. Orange-tips have been zooming about for the last week or so. The males are hard to miss – because, er, they have orange-tipped wings (the females don’t), but they don’t tend to stay still for more than a nanosecond. So my photos were like this…

Orange-tip butterfly in flight

Or even like this…
Orange-tip butterfly in flight

I’d just decided that I’d have to give up on them for the day and was just about to put my camera away when … one suddenly appeared and started landing for a couple of seconds at a time. Then it stopped – I got a quick reference shot. Then it let me get in closer – and still it sat…

Orange-tip butterfly

At last it stopped

Then it flittered off to another leaf…

Orange-tip butterfly

Finally at rest

Then, as if to say, that’s enough photos, thanks, it fluttered off into the treetops. Not the best photos in the world – but my first clear shots of an orange-tip, and that’s certainly pleased me!

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A flash of blue

Now that spring is well and truly here, my thoughts have turned back again to butterflies. In amongst the flashy Peacocks and Small Tortoiseshells and the butter-coloured Brimstones zooming about, I’ve been really pleased to see the first blues of the year – Holly Blues. These are tiny wee things – probably the size of my fingernail. On the ground – with wings closed – they are a very light silvery blue and could almost be petals, but when in flight and when they (rarely) open their wings they become the ‘sky-flakes’ of Robert Frost’s poem.

Holly Blue wings open

Holly Blue wings open

Holly Blue on leaf

Holly Blue on leaf

Holly blue on leaf litter

Holly blue on leaf litter