Saturday, 16 January 2016

First Trip to Greece.

My first ever visit to Greece was thirty years ago this year in 1986.My stay was spent on the Sithonia  peninsula of the Halkidiki region on mainland Greece.The terrain here is rugged and at that time relatively pristine.Two enormous hotels and a golf course dominated this shoreline but just a short walk gave way to a completely rural landscape.I well remember that Nightingales seemed to be everywhere and as it was May they were very vocal.In the meadows the butterflies were numerous with Queen of Spain and Spotted  Fritillaries as well as several species of 'Whites'.Among them were the Eastern Bath White,Eastern Dappled White,and my personal favourite, the Black-veined White.
Superficially the Dappled and the Bath White look the same but there are features which can separate the two.The green mottling on the underside of the Dappled can be said to resemble shadows formed by dappled sunlight through tree leaves and usually has a yellowish appearance to it.There are neat white "keyholes" around the outer-margin of the hindwing, and also of the outer-margin of the forewing but especially towards the wing tip. The underwing  green  of the Eastern Bath White is not so dappled and more of an olive green and less often yellowish.
This can be seen in the following photo of a mating pair of Dappled Whites from '86 and two examples of the Bath White,one from the same date and another seen on Lefkada in 2013.