The Blue Butterflies belong to the sub family Polyommatinae of the large Lycaenidae family.
There are 9 species of these little blue butterflies resident in the British Isles. Although, depending on species and gender, not all are blue.
In excess of 80 species of ‘blue’ butterfly occur in Europe. A few have strong migratory instincts such as the Long-tailed Blue which is occassionaly recorded in Southern England.
The mainly tropical metalmark butterflies of the family Riodinidae are closely related to the Lycaenidae. The only species found in the British Isle is shown at the bottom of the page.
Small Blue (Cupido minimus)
Silver-studded Blue (Plebeius argus)
Brown Argus (Aricia agestis)
Northern Brown Argus (Aricia artaxerxes)
Common Blue (Polyommatus icarus)
The Common Blue Butterfly species page has images and descriptions of the butterfly and its life cycle including caterpillar and pupa.
Chalkhill Blue (Lysandra coridon)
The Chalkhill Blue featured was recorded by Paul Browning in Spain. British Isles images to follow.
Adonis Blue (Lysandra bellargus)
Holly Blue (Celastrina argiolus)
The Holly Blue Butterfly species page has images and descriptions of the butterfly and its life cycle including caterpillar and pupa.
Large Blue (Maculinea arion)
Long-tailed Blue (Lampides boeticus)
The Long-tailed Blue butterfly is a scarce migrant to the British Isles. Although a common species in parts of continental Europe and a strong flyer its seems unable to survive the UK winters at any stage of its life cycle.
The male featured was recorded in a Cornish garden as part of an unusually large influx along the southern coast in 2019 – More information
Other images of the Long-tailed Blue are featured in the European butterfly gallery.
Duke of Burgundy (Hamearis lucina)
Links to Other British Butterfly Galleries:
- British Skipper butterflies (Hesperiidae)
- British Swallowtail butterflies (Papilionidae)
- British White and yellow butterflies (Pieridae)
- British Hairstreak butterflies (Theclinae)
- British Copper butterflies (Lycaeninae)
- British Blue butterflies (Polyommatinae) and Metalmark butterflies (Riodinidae) -this page
- British Vanessid butterflies (Nymphalinae) and Admiral butterflies (Limenitidinae) and Emperor butterflies (Apaturinae)
- British Fritillary butterflies (Heliconiinae)
- British Brown butterflies (Satyrinae)