Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Clouded Yellow Butterfly

Before today the only occasion I had observed a Clouded Yellow Butterfly was in Tuscany.
This species is an immigrant to UK from Southern Europe and Africa and the numbers vary each year from what is usually a rare sighting to the odd year when it is very numerous.

Anyway I was recently alerted through the blog of a local birding colleague who had not only seen one, but taken some really nice images. (Thanks John)

So today I went in search of what to me is an extreme rarity.
On arrival at the location specified by John, I wandered about taking various photos of Common Blue, Large and Small White and Peacock butterflies.

Then I sighted the objective of my mission.{:))
When you spot this species its quite unmistakable, showing a rich yellow wing colour with brown edging to the upper wings. In fact I was very fortunate as I did actually see two at one stage.

Interestingly, the species flight time in UK runs from the last week in May until the end of October, numbers peaking around this time of the year.

Lumix GH3. 100-300mm lens. 1/1300 at f5.6. - 300mm (600) . ISO200

Two images below showing more of the brown edging of the upper wings.

This one below is not great for clarity, but you get the idea of how much brown edging there is.


  1. Hey Roy...We going to have to dub you the "King of Flutter" ; }
    Glad you was able to get to see and photograph this one,and your photo's are gorgeous!!
    Even got one with the wings spread, a feat in it's self at least for me anyway ; }
    We have plenty of these here it is to catch up with them!! I see them going around and around searching in the field next to my house, but just when you think it has, what is it you say pitched? they are of !!


    1. No GG, I am just lucky (occasionally).

  2. Wow! That's a stunning set of images of a beautiful butterfly Roy. I'm extremely jealous now as I've not yet (ever!) had the good fortune to see one. I think they're giving my neck of the woods (meadow) a wide berth! Maybe I'll just have to make do with looking at your cracking images?...[;o)

  3. Well done 'King of Flutter':-D These are not easy to get a good picture, they do not sit still for long, and to get one with its wings open is a miracle;-) I've chased these around, manage to get a couple of reasonably good shots, the rest are just a blur. I bow down to you Roy, brilliant pictures;-)

    1. Hey steady on Lyn, they're not that good,.{:))
      Thanks anyway. Yes they don't stay long perched anywhere.
      I did cover a lot of ground trying to keep up with it, mostly covering the same ground several times.

  4. I am super envious as I've yet to see a Clouded Yellow anywhere let alone here in the UK, though I have heard lots of reports recently especially from friends in the Lincolnshire area. Superb photos as always :-)

  5. Cracking set Roy. This is one that is eluding me at the moment, no matter where I search lol

  6. Wat een heerlijke vlinderserie heb je ons weer laten zien Roy het is pure klasse.

  7. Excellent shots of this beauty Roy.

  8. Wonderful! I've been told that there are some in my local reserve, but although I've looked a couple of times I've not seen one yet - so I loved seeing your terrific photos of them.

  9. With us are not normally Lucerne Butterflies Roy, but the day before yesterday I saw one in a natural area falcon with me. That was mentioned in the local newspaper with pictures :-)
    Beautiful blog shows you again with great shots of this butterfly.

    1. I think its the warm southern air blowing them up this far Helma.
      Ik denk dat het de warme zuidelijke lucht blazen ze op dit ver Helma.


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