Heaven scent

BBC Wildlife Magazine - - Wild July -

As it flut­ters over boggy grass­land or along a damp wood­land ride, this but­ter­fly is eas­ily mis­taken for the ‘cab­bage whites’ – large and small. But at rest the dif­fer­ences be­come clear. Its un­der­wings are smudged with green veins, an il­lu­sion pro­duced by a com­bi­na­tion of yel­low and black scales. This is also one of the few but­ter­flies we can smell. To tempt fe­males to mate, the male re­leases per­fumed scales, which nat­u­ral­ist Peter Mar­ren mem­o­rably called “lemon­scented love dust”.


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