Other Common Names
Australian Hairstreak, Orange Tit

A truly iconic Australian butterfly, and one that had eluded me for years. When I finally saw my first one, in the hills near Bowral in October 2011, it was a very memorable moment. To say I was excited would be a massive understatement. I saw over a dozen in total, at times there were 3 or 4 of them flying together. They were staying very close to a single wattle, which appeared to be the tree they were breeding on. Much of the time they were too high for me to photograph, but every now and then one or two would settle on lower shrubs directly underneath the wattle, or fly a short distance across the road to bask and feed from flowers. This species is reported to emerge as early as late August at this locality, but most of the specimens I saw were very fresh. I suspect 2011 is a late-starting season around Sydney, which would not be a surprise after the cold winter and lousy spring weather.

Bowral - October 2011, October 2012