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Polyommatus icarus

Polyommatus icarus
Photo Information
Copyright: Roberto Innocenzi (cobra112) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2093 W: 75 N: 6382] (43366)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2013-05-11
Categories: Insects
Camera: Nikon D300s, Sigma 105mm 1:2.8 EX DG Macro
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2013-05-12 0:57
Viewed: 1635
Points: 30
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Polyommatus icarus (Rottemburg 1775) Icaro


Phylum: Arthropoda

Class: Insecta

Order: Lepidoptera

Superfamily: Papilionoidea

Family: Lycaenidae

Subfamily: Polyommatinae

Tribe: Polyommatini

Genus: Polyommatus

Species:P. icarus

The Common Blue (Polyommatus icarus) is a small butterfly in the family Lycaenidae. Male uppersides are an iridescent lilac blue with a thin black border. Females are brown with a row of red spots along the edges. They usually have some blue at the base of the wings and, especially in Ireland and Scotland, are mostly blue but always have the red spots. Undersides have a greyish ground colour in the males and more brownish in the females. Both sexes have a row of red spots along the edge of the hindwings (extending onto the forewings though generally fainter, particularly in the males where they are sometimes missing altogether). There are about a dozen black centered white spots on the hind wings, nine on the forwings. The white fringe on the outer edge of the wings is not crossed with black lines as it is in the Chalkhill and Adonis Blues, an important difference when separating these species, particularly the females.
It is Britain's (and probably Europe's) most common and most widespread blue, found as far north as Orkney and on most of the Outer Hebrides. Males are often very obvious as they defend territories against rivals and search out the more reclusive females. A range of grassland habitats are used: meadows, coastal dunes, woodland clearings and also many man made habitats, anywhere where their food plants are found. It is widespread in Europe, North Africa and temperate Asia. Recently, Polyommatus icarus was discovered in Mirabel, Quebec, Canada by Ara Sarafian. An amateur entomologist, he had been observing the butterfly from 2005 to 2008. He contacted the Canadian National Collection of Insects in Ottawa where the butterfly was identified as P. icarus, a new alien butterfly to Canada and North America. The butterfly seems to be well established and is extending its range from year to year. The main food plant on most sites is Bird's foot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus). Others used include Black Medick Medicago lupulina, Common Restharrow Ononis repens, White Clover Trifolium repens and Lesser Trefoil Trifolium dubium. Eggs are laid singly on young shoots of their food plants. The caterpillar is small, pale green with yellow stripes and as usual with lycid larvae rather slug-like. Hibernation occurs as a half grown larvae. They are attractive to ants but not as much as some other species of blues. The chrysalis is olive green/brown and formed on the ground where it is attended by ants which will often take it into their nests. The larvae creates a substance called honey dew, which the ants eat while the butterfly lives in the ant hill. In the south of Britain there are two broods a year flying in May and June and again in August and September. Northern England has one brood flying between June and September. In a long warm year there is sometimes a partial third brood in the south flying into October.

Polyommatus icarus (Rottemburg 1775) Icaro

Piccolo lepidottero dallo spiccato dimorfismo sessuale. I maschi con ali superiormente blu e con riflessi violacei, margini soffusi di nero e contornati di frange bianche. Le femmine hanno livrea marrone con riflessi bluastri. Le parti inferiori, in ambedue i sessi, sono grigiastre o marrone chiaro, con macchie nere contornate di bianco e serie complete di lunule arancioni puntate di nero.
La specie, svernante allo stadio di bruco, compare da aprile in poi con due o tre generazioni annuali. Le larve vanno alla ricerca di varie Papilionacee (gen. Medicago, Genista, Trifolium, Lathyrus, Ononis, Lotus, ecc..); si presentano verdi con linea medio dorsale pių scura e fianchi percorsi a livello degli stigmi da una fascia biancastra. La ninfosi dura circa due settimane.
L'areale abbraccia Europa ed Asia temperata, presente anche in Nordafrica e Anatolia. In Italia č specie alquanto diffusa dal livello del mare ai 2000 m.

maaciejka, Miss_Piggy, Hotelcalifornia, jcoowanitwong has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

hallo Roberto
super good sharpness and good details of this beauty
i like this composition
thanks greeting lou

  • Great 
  • horias Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 837 W: 58 N: 2084] (11033)
  • [2013-05-12 1:08]

Hi Roberto
Excellent Polyommatus icarus!
Details are very sharp!
Perfect colors and good POV!


Hi Roberto,
really nice presentation of this butterfly. A lot of details. Amazing colours. Perfect composition.
Have a nice day,

Hallo Roberto
You captured an assortment of soft colours in this image. Not only of the lovely butterfly but also that of the petite flower. This macro is very sharp and the details is beautifully seen, especially that of the antennas. Pleasant point of view and composition and the framing is great. Thanks for sharing. Best regards.

Hello Roberto,
Another beautiful butterfly picture.Nice colour and details.
Thanks for sharing,
Kind regards,

  • Great 
  • iti Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 577 W: 0 N: 650] (7939)
  • [2013-05-12 5:27]

Hi Roberto,
Another nice portrait of a beautiful butterfly.
Details, colours and composition are excellent.
Regards Jiri.

Ciao Roberto, piccolina sempre bella, ottima macro, splendida nitidezza e magnifici colori, bravo, ciao Silvio

Hello Roberto,
Impressive photo with excellent clarity and colors. Nice details of this interesting species of butterfly. Perfect WB. I like the lovely details and colors of this capture. Superb composition....Crystal clear capture.
Thanks for sharing!

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2013-05-12 9:52]

Ciao Roby,un po' sfuocata in alto a destra ma in questo periodo vale oro,bei colori e ottima esposizione.Buona serata,Luciano...oggi Silvio ci ha stracciato...eehehe

Ciao Roberto. Mi sa che da te gira ancora poca roba....bei colori brillanti, un po' fuori dal piano di fuoco l'apice delle ali....aspetto la dispar

Hello Roberto
Beautiful photo with good composition and wonderful colours.

Hello Roberto
Fine capture of the buttefly, excellent detail and good exposure, nice setting and background
regards yiannis

Hi Roberto, A beautiful picture of a Common Blue with a flower. POV and dof are perfect. Very well done. JC

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2013-05-15 11:22]

Hello Roberto,
Fantastic macro of this little Common Blue in great sharpness and details. Gorgeous light and very beautiful colours. Excellent DOF and composition.

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