22 July, 2009

Loss of a Gem

This morning I went out into the garden, only to be confronted by a dying Peacock butterfly. It looked like a chunk of this beautiful insect had been taken out of it by a bird, maybe one of the Swifts or Swallows flying above the garden. As I watched, a wasp flew in and hovered above the butterfly. Immediately knowing that this was a predator that meant trouble, the Peacock frantically tried to get away from the wasp, to no avail... it was horrible to watch.

Peacock Butterfly and Wasp

Peacock Butterfly and Wasp

The wasp soon realised this was prey and and began to attack the butterfly with bites and stings...

Peacock Butterfly and Wasp

Even though I knew it wasn't natural to interfere with nature... I couldn't stand to watch this butterfly die the way it was going to; so I picked it up gently using a stick and placed it on a Buddlia in the sun. That way it could feed happily for the last couple of hours of its life.

Peacock Butterfly and Wasp

... and if your wondering, I came back a little while later and the Peacock was nowhere to be seen.


Midmarsh John said...

I really do hate wasps. Some seem to kill for no good reason. The other day I saw a Bumble Bee busy on a clover flower near the middle of the cricket field when a passing wasp attacked the bee even though it could have been no threat to the nearest wasp nest.

Billy Dykes said...

I'm not a big fan of wasps either. I guess this is just nature acting out isn't it? This butterfly is going to die and the wasp is just desposing of it

Adam said...

Hi Bill

Thanks for your comments on my blog - just setup a link to yours. Excellent photos - jealous of the Grayling, amazingly still needed for my life list (but I haven't tried too hard!!!).


GRAMPS said...

Hi Billy. As I have told you before we often look at your site. It goes from strength to strength and become more professional at each publishing both in quality of subject and in presentation. Well done young man. We think that you are a very clever naturalist. Gramps and Granny.

GRANNY said...

Hi Billy, Granny here, I too now have my account so I can answer you without Gramps being here. Reading your blog I think that the butterfly on the bush was probably eaten by a bird, don't you agree ?
Love Granny