Sunday, March 21, 2010

Bramble Green Hairstreak!

What a charming little western butterfly from the "Bramble Hairstreak Complex."

First time I ever saw this elfin beauty was on the property in March of 2001 before our house was built (there's a photo of it in my August 30, 2009 post). I was enamored at first sight, as I never imagined that a butterfly could possibly come in any shade of green.

Late Saturday afternoon, I saw this fellow flitting about the San Diego Viguiera that are blooming in the front garden.

3/20/10 Bramble Green Hairstreak (Callophyrs dumetorum) on San Diego Viguiera (Viguiera laciniata).

The field guide An Introduction to Southern California Butterflies (Fred Heath) describes this species as follows: "This common early spring butterfly has a dark brown upper wing surface that makes it difficult to follow in flight. And when it lands on a plant, its green undersides make it seem to disappear altogether. When you finally locate the Bramble Hairstreak, it is a striking emerald jewel, a treat to behold. The peak of its abundance seems to be around Saint Patrick's Day; what could be more fitting for this bright green butterfly?"


  1. I have not seen this type of butterfly before. I do love the green color....maybe Ireland should import some for St. Pat's Day?

  2. Wow, what a great pastel shade of green. Never seen that critter up here before.

    Christine in Alaska

  3. Oh he's so beautiful. I clicked on the photo to see a better one - its as if a watercolour artist has come along and painted his wings for him with a little bit of speckled sepia colouration as an added extra. Sadly it would be too cold in Ireland for this wee critter - never had those when I was growing up there.

  4. I found several in a field near my home in San Bernardino. They are cute. they are natives of Britain and the Bay Area. The Bay Area has a whole movement to save them since they have been disappearing. Maybe they like Southern CA.