Species: Common Blue (Polyommatus icarus)

Family: Hairstreaks, Coppers and Blues (LYCAENIDAE)

Category: Butterflies & Moths

Location: NW

A. Butterflies & Moths

B. Hairstreaks, Coppers and Blues (LYCAENIDAE)

This is a diverse group of colourful butterflies. The hairstreaks get their name from a thin white line on the underside of the wings. Female blues are often more brown than blue, and the Brown Argus is not blue at all.

C. Common Blue (Polyommatus icarus)

Frequently seen in the cemetery, this butterfly has two broods a year, and is on the wing from May until October. The blue males have their wings edged with black then white on the edge, whereas the females are brown with orange markings then white fringes. Single eggs are laid on legumes such as Common Bird's Foot Trefoil, Greater Bird's Foot Trefoil, Black Medick, Common Restharrow, and Clovers, with all but the Common Restharrow being found in the cemetery. The caterpillars are green.


The Common Blue

The Common Blue butterfly has two broods a year. This individual is a female.

Common Blue

This is a female Common Blue butterfly.

The Common Blue

This example of a Common Blue butterfly is a male, July 2023.

(Photo credit: John Heys.)

Common Blue

This is a male Common Blue butterfly

Common Blue

Here are three Common Blues. The two on the right are mating.

Common Blue

Male Common Blue in the Cemetery, late August 2022.