THE CHALKHILL BLUE
The Chalkhill Blue is confined to southern England particularly over the north and south downs, the Wiltshire downs, Chilterns, Cotswolds, Isle of Wight and Purbeck. It is very rare in south-west England and East Anglia. Nowadays, due to the agricultural destruction of flatter areas of ancient chalk turf, this insect is usually found only on steeper slopes and gullies, ancient earthworks, army ranges and clifftops, provided that the food plant is present, however small the quantity. One colony of 20 butterflies on the Sussex downs has been dependant on a single 3 square metre patch of Horseshoe Vetch . Vegetation height should be ideally about 4 cms but up to 10 cms can be tolerated. A southerly aspect is favoured, and often a sheltered glade surrounded at a distance by tall trees. Grazing by rabbits, deer, cattle or sheep is preferred but areas cut by machine may be tolerated if cutting is carried out in the winter. ( © BirdGuides)
All images are of males and were taken during July in the areas around Gallows Hill and Incombe Hole in Buckinghamshire.
|Getting moisture/nutrients from sheep dung!|