Theclinesthes serpentatus, (and friends)

A big name for a small butterfly, better known as the Chequered or Saltbush Blue. Einadia nutans is a small scrambling native saltbush common along the river locally, and now in the garden, seed¬† having probably migrated there on equipment after working bees at the reserve. The tiny fruits are relished by birds, and the foliage is the host plant for the butterfly larvae. A plant is growing beside the raised bed where the Xerochrysums are located. The small yellow fruit will turn red if the Yellow-rumped Thornbills don’t get them first as they did with the first crop. Hopefully larvae will appear on the numerous saltbush plants.

On a sunny day after the smoke pall had cleared, at least three were busy feeding on the daisies.

From another day with less breeze to make things difficult.

Also about, a Yellow-banded Dart, Ocybadistes walkeri, fuelling up on nectar.

And on another occasion a Two-spotted Line-blue, Nacaduba biocellata flitted in to perch quietly on a pruned stem, giving a good photo opportunity.

All images except the last will enlarge with a click.

Insect Magnets.

Referring to the Xerochrysums of course, planted as previously noted to attract butterflies, but until now, despite frequent checking, bringing in anything but. Finally, a small grey butterfly settled that at first glance was thought to be a Common Grass Blue, but closer inspection showed it to be the Two-Spotted Line-Blue, Nacaduba biocellata.

Native bees and wasps of many different species have been constant visitors to the flowers. On a cool morning with  thick smoke haze this male bee, Lipotriches australica slept late in a partially opened flower, held in place by its gripping mandibles.

Although we’re into autumn quite a few native bees are still hard at work, like this tattered-winged Lasioglossum lanarium that worked several flowers.

Flower wasps are great pollinators, for example this Australelis anthracina anthracina.

Click to enlarge.