MY FAVOURITE CARTOON AS A BOY..

Monday, September 03, 2007

SMALL TORTOISESHELL BUTTERFLY


During our day or so in the Cotswolds, we saw many nice creatures (and plants)- loads of (very vocal indeed!) Buzzards, a great view of a male Sparrowhawk, which we watched from above, patrolling a hedge near Westmancote, on the side of Bredon Hill, 2 species of Woodpeckers and the usual Gloucester cattle and sheep - all great stuff!

I know the Small Tortoiseshell Butterfly is about as common as butterflies get, but I do love the warmth of the Cotswold stone ( a honey coloured, oolithic limestone, famous for its golden colour and fossil content, particularly sea urchins) buildings, and so do these butterflies obviously!

Small Tortoiseshells can be distinguished from the rarer, (southern), Large Tortoiseshells by their much wider distribution, and their brighter colouration - look especially for the blue marginal wing markings which the Large lacks - they are more dull orange in colour.

Tortoiseshells are one of the butterflies that overwinter as adults, by finding a spot of shelter in an old tree or shed.

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