Thursday, 10 September 2009

Visit from a Comma

The buddleja on the North plot is attracting various butterflies and bees, including a Comma.
Looking like a tatty Small Tortoiseshell, the Comma is a familar sight through most of England and Wales. This is one of the few species that is bucking the trend by expanding its range considerably. Once confined to the Welsh border counties, especially Gloucestershire, Herefordshire and Monmouthshire, this species is now found throughout England and Wales and has recently reached Scotland. The butterfly gets its name from the only white marking on its underside, resembling a comma.
When its wings are closed, this butterfly has a most remarkable camouflage that is perfect when it rests on a tree trunk or when it is hibernating. The colouring of the underside, in combination with the jagged outline of the wings, makes the butterfly look as inconspicuous as any withered leaves in the vicinity.

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