Provence Chalkhill Blue (Polyommatus hispanus)

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2016 photographs highlighted in green. Click on any photograph to go to an enlarged picture, or simply scroll down the page.

10173_male_Var_1May08 29739_male_Var_5Jun12 34705_male_Var_6May14
34724_male_Var_6May14 37482_male_Rhône_10Jun15 40467_male_Var_11May16
40708_female_Var_6Jun16 24628_male_Var_07May11 13951_male_Var_27Aug08
15399_male_Var_23May09 40402_male_Var_8May16 40474_male_Var_11May16
42204_female_Var_4Sep16 40384_pair_Var_8May16 37341_female_Var_22May15
   
42242_ovum_Var_25Sep16    

Hispanus is very similar to the Chalkhill Blue (P. coridon), the differences being described on the coridon page. It is double brooded, the first brood emerging from late April, and the second brood may be on the wing until well into October. It is widespread and often very common in Provence.

This species was previously known as Lysandra hispana.
ref sex

observations

alt. m
10173 M

a typical male, a distinctly yellow tinge to the blue.

185
29739 M a fresh male, perhaps slightly bluer than the norm for hispanus. 220
34705 M a male, perhaps typical of the slightly dulled blue of hispanus. 185
34724 M a male, the same individual as 34705, but a shot taken of both wings to give a different perspective, often difficult with a macro lens with limited depth of field. 185
37482 M a male, from the département of the Rhône, which is about the northernmost part of its range. It seems to be a rather duller, yellower, blue colour than those I see in Provence. 180
40467 M the male of a mating pair, female just visible below. The deeper, dusky colouring is typical of male hispanus from the south of Var. 220
40708 F a fresh female. 220
24628 M a typical male underside, perhaps the uph is rather less brown than the norm. 220
13951 M

a male with the typical smudgy unf marginal markings, as compared to coridon which always seems much cleaner. The unh marginal black spots have some silver scales in them, particularly in s1-3, which I have never seen before, nor have I ever seen it written about in books, although I have seen examples of UK specimens of coridon with similar effects.

185
15399 M

a very fresh male, nicely and cleanly marked, and even the usually smudgy unf marginal markings look quite tidy.

140
40402 M an aberration, not dissimilar to coridon ab. coridonis, at least on the hindwing. 220
40474 M a mating pair, male uppermost, with a rather bluer colour than the norm. 220
42204 F a beautifully crisply marked fresh female, very bold markings. It appears smudgy but in fact it is the markings that are indistinct, not the photograph. 220
40384 PAIR another mating pair, the paler male on the right. This species is double brooded and very common in both broods in central Var, particularly the latter brood where mating pairs are commonplace. 220
37341 F a female, quite strongly marked. 220
42242 OVUM a freshly laid egg on the larval hostplant, Horseshoe Vetch (Hippocrepis comosa). 220

 

10173_male_Var_1May08

 

29739_male_Var_5Jun12

 

34705_male_Var_6May14

 

34724_male_Var_6May14

 

37482_male_Rhône_10Jun15

 

40467_male_Var_11May16

 

40708_female_Var_6Jun16

 

24628_male_Var_07May11

 

13951_male_Var_27Aug08

 

15399_male_Var_23May09

 

40402_male_Var_8May16

 

40474_male_Var_11May16

 

42204_female_Var_4Sep16

 

40384_pair_Var_8May16

 

37341_female_Var_22May15

 

42242_ovum_Var_25Sep16