Brown Argus - Aricia agestis

Scientific Name: Aricia agestis (syn. Plebeius agestis).

English Name: Brown Argus.

French Name: Le Collier-de-corail (='the coral necklace') or l'Argus brun (='the brown argus').

5 Key Characters:
  • a band of orangey red crescents close to the outer edge of each wing.
  • small (forewings 12 -15 mm).
  • upperside brown.
  • a black spot in the middle of the upperside forewing.
  • undersides grey or brown with spots.
Lookalikes: They can easily be confused with female Common Blues Polyommatus icarus, but this species does not have the black spot on the forewing.

Habitat: Unimproved, dry grassland, open woodland and fringes. On very hot days they rest on long grass stems in the shade.

Flight Period: April-May-June-July-August-September-October.

Caterpillar: small, green with a red and white stripe down the side. June to April, overwintering as a caterpillar in leaf litter.

Host Plant: Geraniums (Cut-leafed Cranesbill Geranium dissectum, Dovesfoot Cranesbill G. molle, Round-leafed Cranesbill G. rotundifolium, G. purpureum, Common Storksbill Erodium cicutarium), Rockroses (Common Rockrose Helianthemum nummularium, White Rockrose H. apenninum) and Birdsfoot Trefoil Lotus corniculatus.

Status: Very common. Widely distributed and quite abundant. This is a conspicuous and easy to see butterfly in the Touraine Loire Valley and Brenne.

Photographed by Loire Valley Nature:

Photographs numbered from left to right, and top to bottom. All photos will enlarge in a new window if you click on them. 1 female on Daisy Bellis perennis in our orchard, April. 2 - 5 two slightly confused male Common Blues Polyommatus icarus tentatively attending a similarly responsive Brown Argus Aricia agestis female on Common Birdsfoot Trefoil Lotus corniculatus in our orchard, May.

On Yorkshire Fog Holcus lanatus.

No comments:

Post a Comment