Orange Tip Butterfly

Anthocharis cardamines, the orange tip, is a butterfly in the family Pieridae. The common name derives from the bright orange tips of the male’s forewings. The males are a common sight in spring, flying along hedgerows and damp meadows in search of the more reclusive female which lacks the orange and is often mistaken for one of the other ‘white’ butterflies. The undersides are mottled green and white and create a superb camouflage when settled on flowerheads such as cow parsley and garlic mustard. The male is able to hide his orange tips by tucking the forewings behind the hindwings at rest. On close examination of the mottling, the green colour can be seen to be made up of a mixture of black and yellow scales. The butterfly is found across Europe, and eastwards into temperate Asia as far as Japan. The past 30 years have seen a rapid increase in the range of the orange tip in the UK, particularly in Scotland and Ireland, probably in response to climate change.
IMG_0362 (2) 16

Orange-tip Butterfly

Image | This entry was posted in Wilden Marsh Nature Reserve. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Orange Tip Butterfly

  1. Pete Hillman says:

    I adore the Orange-tip. I normally see them fluttering along the path on the margin of a local wood. Great photo, Michael!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Murtagh's Meadow says:

    Great photo. We seem to have more orange tips this year than previous years here in the West of Ireland There also seems to be an abundance of cuckoo flower one of the larva food plants.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s