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newly emerged silver studded blue

By dannybeath      
this is a 4 minute old male silver studded blue, having just emerged from its host ant nest on prees heath nature reserve in north shropshire
here you can see the ants crawling all over him in a bid to clean him up before his nuptial flight
the butterflies are taken into the nest as larvae the previous summer and they over winter in the anthills fooling the ants
into thinking they are ant larva. they pupate underground and when they emerge as adults the following summer
they are escorted quickly out of the nest as "ant queens" the deception s complete when they flutter off

Tags: Wildlife and nature Prees heath Silver studded blues Black meadow ants

Voters: lonely_oryx, annettep38, samarmishra and 24 more

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annettep38 Plus
6 218 40 Costa Rica
22 Nov 2011 12:01PM
a very interesting fine capture.
and as a bonus, I just learned something very interesting!!!

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22 Nov 2011 12:05PM
Excellent image dear friend, very well spotted and very well captured.

22 Nov 2011 12:06PM
Brilliant photograph of the moment and a very informative narrative.
rontear Plus
14 8 8 England
22 Nov 2011 3:05PM
Amazing nature Danny, excellent image too.
22 Nov 2011 4:19PM
What an interesting description you have added to this unusual image. Without it I would have thought the poor thing was being eaten alive!
KarenFB Plus
11 4.9k 171 England
22 Nov 2011 5:52PM
What a stunning capture - I'm very envious! Smile
mattberry 13 259 14 England
22 Nov 2011 7:03PM
Nice to see and capture the interaction between species Danny, well done!
CarolG Plus
10 199 20 Greece
22 Nov 2011 7:13PM
A superb capture, and a most interesting explanation of the ants, thank you. Carol
8 10 10 England
22 Nov 2011 7:32PM
Really enjoyed the information as well as a first class image.
22 Nov 2011 7:45PM
Beautifully caught macro!
tomcat 12 6.4k 15 United Kingdom
22 Nov 2011 8:35PM
Been trying to fault this, but can'tSad

A fine example of the natural world, getting on with it's business without our involvement


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