21 October 2016

Thousands of Clouded Yellows - Haradh

Whilst in Haradh recently Phil Roberts and I saw huge numbers of Clouded Yellows in a single pivot irrigation field. The numbers probably exceeded one thousand individuals and it was an amazing sight. The Clouded Yellow is occasionally common in all areas of Saudi Arabia, originating from North Africa and southern Europe. The upperside is golden to orange yellow with a broad black margin on all four wings and a black spot near the centre forewing. The underside lacks the black borders and is lighter, with a more greenish tint, particularly on the forewings. In the forewing underside is the same dark spot as on the upperside, but often with a light centre; the hindwing underside has a white centre spot, often with a smaller white or dark dot immediately above it. Sometimes, a row of black dots occurs on the underwings' outer margins, corresponding to where the black border ends on the upperside, Females differ from the males in having yellow spots along the black borders on the upperside. In flight, it is easily identifiable by the intense yellow colouring, and like all Colias species, they hardly ever open their wings at rest, although the one Phil photographed did open its wings very briefly allow Phil to take the photograph below that he has kindly allowed me to use on my website.
Clouded Yellow