Butterflies - Green Hairstreak (Callophrys rubi)
This little butterfly is easily overlooked due to its colouration. The upper sides of its wings are brown but this is rarely seen since the Green Hairstreak always closes its wings when not in flight. The green undersides are a vivid iridescent metallic green often edged in tan brown with white spots forming a feint white 'streak' on the hind wings. The extent of the white marking is highly variable and in some cases almost absent.
Its flight is rapid and jerky. Territorial males often return to the same perch while the females are more often seen when searching for larval food plants upon which to lay their eggs.
- Larval Food Plants
- Key Sites
The larvae of the Green Hairstreak feed on a variety of plant species depending upon the habitat.
Calcareous grassland: e.g. Ryton Wood Meadows BC Reserve
Rockrose (Helianthemum nummularium)
Bird's-foot Trefoil (Lotus corniculatis)
Heathland: e.g. Sutton Park
Cowberry (Vaccinium vitis-idaea)
Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus)
Crowberry (Empetrium nigrum)
Cranberry (Vaccinium oxycoccus)
Gorse (Ulex europeaus)
Broom (Cytisus scoparius)
Dyer's Greenweed (Genista tinctoria)
Other food plants used include:
Dogwood (Cornus sanguinea)
Buckthorn (Rhamnus cathartica)
Bramble (Rubus fruticosus)
In Warwickshire, the Green Hairstreak is found on Calcareous grassland, scrubby grassland, woodland rides and clearings, heathland, old quarries and railway cuttings.
Resident in Warwickshire.
Harbury Spoilbank (WWT Reserve)
Stockton Cutting (WWT Reserve)
Ryton Wood Meadows (BC Reserve)
A photographic slideshow displaying various images of the Green Hairstreak is currently in development.
Details of how you can supply your own photographs for display here will be made available soon.
The flight chart below is based on observations of the adult Green Hairstreak butterfly in Warwickshire between 2005 and 2008. Peak periods are shown in dark green.