Green hairstreak

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The Independent Online

Although we have a so-called dark green fritillary and a green-veined white, they are not really green; this is the only British butterfly with truly green wings – the undersides – which, with their beautiful metallic sheen, are visible when it is at rest.

Larval foodplants: A very large range, 10 or even more, from rock rose and bird's foot trefoil to brambles, gorse and broom.

Where seen: On a wide range of soils generally in the west, including in Scotland; strongly associated with scrub and shrubs such as hawthorn.

Current conservation status: Very widespread and still fairly numerous, but dropping steeply in numbers for reasons not well understood. Decline of 37 per cent since 1976.