File:Small Tortoiseshell Butterfly (Aglais urticae) - - 1384257.jpg

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English: Small Tortoiseshell Butterfly (Aglais urticae). See > 1384242 for a wider view of this location. This attractive butterfly was not so long ago regarded as one of Britain's most familiar and common butterflies, but in recent years has shown signs of decline. It has always been subject to dramatic fluctuations in abundance, however: in some years extremely scarce and very common and abundant in others, believed to be linked to spring and early summer temperatures, which affect both the butterfly, and its larval parasitoids. Recent evidence also suggests that common wasps are major predators of the larvae, and it is likely that in years when wasps are abundant the numbers are greatly depleted. The name of this butterfly is derived from the pattern on the underside of the wings, which is described to resemble that of a tortoise shell. The scientific name, urticae, refers to the stinging nettles on which the caterpillar > feeds.
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Author Evelyn Simak
Camera location 52° 31′ 21.73″ N, 1° 17′ 07.43″ E  Heading=67° Kartographer map based on OpenStreetMap. View this and other nearby images on: OpenStreetMap - Google Earth info


British Isles all.svg This image was taken from the Geograph project collection. See this photograph's page on the Geograph website for the photographer's contact details. The copyright on this image is owned by Evelyn Simak and is licensed for reuse under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 license.
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Attribution: Evelyn Simak
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