Thursday 16 May 2024

Green Hairstreaks Come Together.

 Following on from the mating Orange-tips, on my previous post, it was just a few days later when I was on my normal patch with James, when I was lucky to spot a Green Hairstreak in a Hawthorn bush. Checking it out to see if it was a fresh individual through the binoculars it quickly became clear it was actually a mating pair I was looking at.

As usual with a mating pair, the female was much fresher than the male, as most females are mated very quickly after they emerge. Although I have seen mating Green Hairstreaks before, it has been a few years since my last encounter, so it was great that they were occupied enough not to fly off. We watched the pair on and off for the next couple of hours, in that time they hardly moved, only flitting from one bush to some Bramble, and after all this time they were still attached. At one point the female tried to push the male off, but he was not going to go until he was ready!!  Eventually we left them in peace.

Mating Green Hairstreak, female on the left.

The Female Green Hairstreak trying to push the male off.

A few days later I was checking the large area of Garlic Mustard for Orange-tip eggs, when I disturbed a couple of Green Hairstreak that were enjoying the nectar from the plant. This is the first year that I can remember them using Garlic Mustard as a nectaring plant.

Green Hairstreak feeding on Garlic Mustard.

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