Thursday, 12 June 2014

Butterfly news

and excellent news it is - the Continental Swallowtail is breeding in Sussex! I pass on this report partly for its happy content, and partly for the glorious sentence 'The UK's subspecies is smaller, darker and lives in Norfolk'.


  1. Smaller, darker, lives in Norfolk, and extremely fussy about its food. And, we might suppose, simultaneously fascinated and repulsed by the flamboyance and promiscuous eating habits of its Continental cousin.

  2. This is also rather wonderful: "Gritting the roads with salt increases wing power in butterflies and boosts their brain size, according to a study released earlier this week.
    Research by Minnesota University found male insects that fed on plants rich in sodium that had run off from nearby roads had bigger muscles - while the females had larger eyes."

  3. Absolutely, Waldo - give me the dark and dwarfish Norfolk-dweller every time!
    And yes, Anon, that's an interesting bit of research - butterflies love their minerals, and I'm sure there's a lot more to be found out about their tastes and needs. The things Purple Emperors enjoy feeding on are utterly disgusting...