Identify UK Lycaenid?

Neil Jones Neil at
Sat Aug 19 14:47:47 EDT 2000

In article <966693593.9666.0.nnrp-14.c1ed46ae at>
           keith.edkins at "Keith Edkins" writes:

> Can anybody give a definite identification of the photos at
> My handbooks aren't really up to to distinguishing a female Silver-studded
> Blue (Plebejus argus) from a Brown Argus (Aricia agestis). Or given that
> these seem to be somewhat scarce and localised species (not local to
> Cambridge anyway), is it really a very brown female Common Blue (Polyommatus
> icarus)?
> Keith Edkins
> Cambidge

It isn't a Silver Studded Blue these really are scarce, in any case
SSBs don't have the little inward pointing white triangle on the hindwing.
They do look quite different. It isn't a Common Blue either because
it lacks certain spots on the inner forewing. So that leaves the
Brown Argus. Good photos particularly the underside. I thought there
might be trouble because unless the forewing is held up you can't
see the difference.

I seem to recall seeing in one of the Butterfly Conservation branch newsletters
Possibly Cambridge and Essex or  Suffolk that the Brown Argus was expanding
its range in your part of the world. It does use various Geranium species as
foodplants. (I mean wild Geraniums not Pelargoniums)

Neil Jones- Neil at
"At some point I had to stand up and be counted. Who speaks for the
butterflies?" Andrew Lees - The quotation on his memorial at Crymlyn Bog
National Nature Reserve

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