Lepidoptera The Clifden Blue Butterfly – Lycana Bellargus
Our coloured representations of this beautiful blue (
The under side (fig. 90) is similar in both sexes-greyish brown, with a border of reddish spots, and a number of black spots in white rings, the arrangement of which is here represented.
The butterfly frequents chalky downs, chiefly in the south of England, and seems to be unknown in Scotland and Ireland. The Isle of Wight, and the chalky downs and banks of Sussex, Surrey, and Kent, are its favourite localities; and even in these it is generally very local, sometimes swarming on a grassy bank of no great extent, when the surrounding neighbourhood, though apparently equally suitable to its requirements, does not harbour a single specimen. It is on the wing in May and June, and again in August.
The caterpillar is green, with two rows of yellow streaks on the back, and a yellow stripe on each side. It feeds on the Dutch clover (Trifolium repens), horse-shoe vetch (Hippocrepis comosa), and various other leguminous plants.