Butterflies are a very British obsession, one that is documented by a new BBC natural history programme. Here, the moment an orange tip emerges from its pupa is captured in fine detail.
At this time of year, British butterflies including the iconic peacock rest for winter. Favourite hiding places include log piles where flashes of brightly coloured wings warn off would-be predators such as mice.
Caterpillars are also masters of disguise. Here a purple emperor caterpillar mimics a sallow leaf, down to the vein patterning. Butterflies: A Very British Obsession is broadcast at GMT20.00 on BBC Two on Friday 17 December.
This ephemeral and transformative nature of butterflies has inspired many artists, including renowned street artist Nick Walker who often features them in his urban artwork.
Butterflies are also one of Britain's most popular tattoo designs. The unique life cycles and beauty of these insects inspire many to wear their images as permanent symbols of change and strength.
Yet despite our obsession with them, three quarters of British butterflies are in decline, due in part to habitat loss. Urban food sources are becoming increasingly important for species such as this grayling.
Other species, such as the Endangered Glanville fritillary, are on the charity Butterfly Conservation's Red List of threatened UK species. Populations are restricted to fewer than 500 square kilometres on the Isle of Wight.
Butterflies are famously short-lived, lasting only 9 months at maximum. Even species migrating to and from the UK, such as this painted lady in Morocco, must avoid considerable obstacles on their journey, including frogs.
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