INSECTS

LEPIDOPTERA - The Butterflies and Moths
Generally, the lepidoptera would probably be argued to be the most popular and recognisable of all insects, with butterflies being one of the few groups that has no real negative connotations to the general public.  They are chracterised by large scaly wings, frequently in bright colours, and less notable, often long prehensile proboscises they use for feeding. There are around 180,000 species in this order, 15-20,000 of which are butterflies and the rest moths.  Butterflies are however, much more popular for "hobby naturalists" due to being usually more colourful, usually day-flying and generally being all of a suitable size to be seen easily, unlike moths whose much greater diversity includes large numbers of so called "micromoths" which are far smaller than most butterflies.

I try to photograph all new butterflies I see, but generally only photograph the more visually distinctive moths as otherwise identifying them is exponentially harder.


BUTTERFLIES

Autumn Leaf (Doleschallia bisaltide) 
Banded Marquis (Bassarona tueta) 
Black-banded Hairstreak (Antigius attilia) 
Blue Pansy (Junonia orithya)
Blue Triangle (Graphium sarpedon)
Brown Argus (Aricia agestis)
Cardinal (Argynnis pandora)
Chocolate Pansy (Junonia hedonia)
Clouded Yellow (Colias croceus)
Comma (Polygonia c-album)
Common Blue (Polyommatus icarus)
Common Fivering (Ypthima argus)
Common Brimstone (Gonepteryx rhamni)
Common Mormon (Gonepteryx rhamni)
Cycad Blue (Chilades pandava)
Dingy Skipper (Erynnis tages)
Essex Skipper (Thymelicus lineola)
European Peacock (Inachis io)
Gatekeeper (Pyronia tithonus)
Gray-veined White (Pieris rapae)
Green Hairstreak (Callophrys rubi)
Green-veined White (Pieris napi)
Grizzled Skipper (Pyrgus malvae)
Holly Blue (Celastrina argiolus)
Japanese Marbled Emperor (Hestina japonica) (**English name is speculative**)
Large Skipper (Ochlodes sylvanus)
Large White (Pieris brassicae)
Magpie Crow (Euploea radamanthus)
Marbled White (Melanargia galathea)
Meadow Brown (Maniola jurtina)
Orange Tip (Anthocharis cardamines)
Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui)
Pea Blue (Lampides boeticus)
Purple Emperor (Apatura iris)
Purple Hairstreak (Neozephyrus quercus)
Red Admiral (Vanessa atalanta)
Ringlet (Aphantopus hyperantus)
Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas)
Small Heath (Coenonympha pamphilus)
Small Pearl-Bordered Fritillary (Boloria selene)
Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris)
Small Tortoiseshell (Aglais urticae)
Small White (Pieris rapae)
Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria)
Striped Blue Crow (Euploea mulciber)
Tufted Jungleking (Thauria aliris)
Wall (Lasiommata megara)
Wavy Maplet (Chersonesia rahria)
White Admiral (Limentis camilla)

MOTHS

ODONATA - The Dragonflies and Damselflies

Certainly one of the more charismatic groups, the Dragonflies and Damselflies, (known officially as the "odonates") are one of the most popular types of insects in human culture due in no small part to their acrobatic nature and vibrant colours.  They are widely distributed, though not necessarily evenly - for instance the UK has 52 species compared to Japan which has 172.  Worldwide, there are around 5,900 species currently recorded.  Dragonflies tend to be larger and more powerful fliers than Damselflies as well as other more technical differences involving wing proportions and where they hold their wings when alighted among others.  Both have a life cycle where nymphs live as aquatic predators before maturing to the adult stage of their lives.

Azure Damselfly (Coenagrion puella)
Banded Demoiselle (Caeloptery splendens)
Black-tailed Skimmer (Orthetrum cancellatum) 
Blue Ground Skimmer (Diplacodes trivialis) 
Blue-tailed Damselfly (Ischnura elegans)
Blue-tailed Forest Hawk (Orthetrum triangulare)
Broad-bodied Chaser (Libellulla depressa)
Brown Hawker (Aeshna grandis)
COLEOPTERA - The Beetles
Consisting of around 25% of all known animal species and 40% of insects, the order of Coleoptera is the single largest order of animals on the planet.  The total is apparently 350,000-400,000 species, which for reference, would mean there are 35-40 times as many species of beetle as there are birds.  This is clearly way too many to target as a species group, especially as many are tiny and indistinct.  This list then serves more as a selected highlights of the larger or more charismatic species I find.

2-Spotted Ladybird (Adalia 2-punctata) 

7-Spot Ladybird (Coccinella 7-punctata)
10-Spot Ladybird (Adalia 10-punctata)
14-Spot Ladybird (Propylea 14-punctata)
22-Spot Ladybird (Psyllobora vigintiduopunctata)
24-Spot Ladybird (Subcoccinella vigintiquatuorpunctata)
Adonis Ladybird (Adonia variegata)
Bloody-nosed Beetle (Timarcha tenebricosa)
Bryony Ladybird (Henosepilachna argus)
Cereal Leaf Beetle (Oulema melanopus)
Common Cardinal Beetle (Pyrochroa serraticornis)
Common Red Soldier Beetle (Rhagonycha fulva)
Cream-spot Ladybird (Calvia 14-guttata)
Formosan Longhorn Beetle (Olenecamptus formosanus) (**English name is speculative**)
Great Diving Beetle (Dytiscus marginalis)
Green Chafer (Anomala albopilosa)
Green Tiger Beetle (Cicindela campestris)
Harlequin Ladybird (Harmonia axyridis)
Orange Ladybird (Halyzia 16-guttata)
Pock-marked Scarab (Scarabaeus cicatricosus) (**English name is speculative**)
Lesser Stag Beetle (Dorcus parallelipipedus)
Spotted Longhorn (Ruptela maculata)
Sulphur Beetle (Cteniopus sulphureus)
Thick-Legged Flower Beetle (Oedemera nobilis)
Wasp Beetle (Clytus arietis)

MANTODEA - The Mantises

Mantises are a wide-spread group of carnivorous insects whose have evolved their front legs into specialized striking claws.  There are around 2,400 species worldwide, although they are absent from the UK as a native species, though they are present throughout much of the rest of Europe particularly the Mediterranean.

Japanese Giant Mantis (Tenodera aridifolia)


ORTHOPTERA - The Crickets and Grasshoppers

Orthoptera is a fairly varied group of species characterised by being usually terrestrial though capable of flight, possessing powerful hind legs often used for jumping and perhaps most famously, their ability to "sing" by use of friction between either their wings or their legs.  There are various differences between crickets and grasshoppers (and indeed, the other families of orthoptera I have yet to account) but the most common ones being crickets sing with their wings, and have a generally thicker and proportionally shorter body, while grasshoppers tend to be more slender relative to their length.  There are around 18000 species worldwide, but only 30 in the UK.

Chinese Grasshopper (Acrida cinerea)
Common Field Grasshopper (Chorthippus brunneus)
Dark Bush Cricket (Pholidoptera griseoaptera)
Eastern Bush Cricket (Pholidoptera griseoaptera) (**English name is speculative**)
Green Mountain Grasshopper (Miramella alpina)
Long-winged Conehead (Conocephalus discolor)
Meadow Grasshopper (Chorthippus parallelus)
Roesel's Bush Cricket (Metrioptera roeselii)
Speckled Bush Cricket (Leptophyes punctatissima)
Wart-biter (Decticus verrucivorus)

HYMENOPTERA - The Bees, Wasps and Ants
These three groups are some of the more ubiquitous species in the world, the order as a whole contains many of the most of the most colony based species on the planet, although this is not uniquely so, as there are many solitary species in the order which frequently lean towards parasitism.  There are over 150,000 species known to science, and more yet to be described.

Ashy Mining Bumblebee (Andrena cineraria)
Buff-tailed Bumblebee (Bombus terrestris)
Common Carder Bee (Bombus pascuorum)
Red-tailed Bumblebee (Bombus lapidarius)
Ruby-tailed Wasp (Chrysis ignita)
Violet Carpenter Bee (Xylocopa violacea)
Western Honey Bee (Apis mellifera)

DIPTERA - The Flies
The flies are a common and versatile order of insects defined by a single pair of wings with the rear wings adapted into structures called halteres which function as gyroscopes. are one of the more ubiquitous orders of insects, essentially found anywhere where there are flower plants to support them.  There are over a million species estimated world wide although only a quarter of that has been described.  For the sake of this blog, I will only be describing certain more common and charismatic groups such as the hoverflies for practicalities sake. 

Large Tiger Hoverfly (Helophilus trivittatus)
Long Hoverfly (Sphaerophoria scripta)
Marmalade Hoverfly (Episyrphus balteatus)
Pellucid Fly (Volucella pellucens)

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