Sunday, 10 July 2016

Skipper in the grass!

I have been fortunate enough, after a very poor start  to the Butterfly season, for me anyway, to stumble across a small colony of Small Skippers. It's a small area of long grasses along the edge of a woodland trail, usally left undisturbed and bathed in early morning sunshine, when the sun is shining.
The colony is small, the highest number of Small skippers seen at the same time was approximately six or seven, there were probably a few more unseen in the grasses though. 

I have read that this species favours a grass called "Yorkshire Fog", I am no expert on grasses, they all look the same to me, so I must take a closer look at the area to see what species of grasses are in the immediate area.

The Small Skipper, a grassland Butterfly, often seen basking on long grass stems with its wings held open and the forewing held at an angle to the hind wing.

You can clearly see this on the Small Skipper I photographed the other day, one of my favourite photographs I have ever captured of this species.

Small Skipper 
This Skipper colony has given me quite a few Photograph opportunities this last few days in early July, they are quite approachable when found basking. on a grass stem.

This is the typical view of the Small Skipper shown in the photograph below, this being a male and showing the thin sex brand on the wing. which is actually a thin line of scent scales. only seen on the male.
I must admit that I have not really noticed that dark leading edge to the hind wing before, seems quite prominent now in the photographs, maybe the Small Skippers seen before have all had that hind wing covered.

Small Skipper male

Another nice view of the underwing, and the antenna on the photograph below. The Essex Skipper , a very similar looking skipper has more extensive black tips on the antenna

Nice to get some close views of this lovely golden Skipper, now to find some Essex and Large Skippers.

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