Butterflies in the Garden

Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui)

Link to full size image

In the garden of the house that I rent we have three Buddleia plants which are well known for attracting butterflies. In fact, buddleias are often known as the “butterfly bush”. After work one day this week I wandered into the garden, as I often do of an evening, and found three different butterflies enjoying our buddleias. The first butterfly I saw was a Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui) which was very happy to pose for me and didn’t seem concerned at all about me trying to get close to it and sticking my Tamron 90mm f2.8 macro in its face!

The two other butterflies that weren’t quite so happy to pose for me that day were a Red Admiral (Vanessa atalanta) seen here in the image on the left below, and a Peacock (Inachis io) as seen in the right hand image. They were both flitting from one buddleia bush to another but they never seemed to stop still long enough for me to get a decent capture.
I’ve written before about how important butterflies are as pollinators and as an indicator of how healthy nature is so it’s great to see them enjoying the plants in our garden. Of course, they are wonderful to photograph, but it makes me happy to know that, despite their declining numbers, we can still encourage them into our gardens by offering them an food source. Perhaps if we spent more effort in protecting nature we could see more of these incredible insects fluttering around our green spaces. I can only hope so.

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