Butterfly Conservation News says this, about one of our most common (and dazzling) butterflies …

“The Small Tortoiseshell is a common garden species but you are most likely to find this butterfly amongst the weeds and wild areas than in the formal flowerbeds.   Females lay their eggs on nettles and at night both sexes will roost in the nettle patch.  A leaf-like underwing provides camouflage to protect them from predators.  The pretty blue edging to their bright upperwing is an easy way to distinguish this butterfly from similar species.”

BCN is encouraging people to practise their identification skills ahead of this year’s Big Butterfly Count with a free app and chart.

It’s hard to find anyone who’s indifferent to butterflies, let alone hostile to them.  That applies to small garden birds as well.  They both enrich our lives.

It applies particularly to the wren, which almost because our national bird.

The RSPB says that wrens eat insects and spiders.  Now, butterflies are insects, so wrens catch and eat butterflies, and it’s quite a shock to see this happening.   So, when a wren is hunting a small tortoiseshell in your garden, which of them do you root for?  And what do you say when small children comment about the ‘fairness’ of it all?

1 Comment

  1. I have just seen, I think it was a sparrow, chase a red admiral, catch it and eat it, I was really shocked as I did’nt realise birds ate butterflies.

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