Geranium Bronze

Cacyreus marshalli

The Geranium Bronze butterfly is a tiny (wingspan β‰ˆ2cm) but very well known inhabitant of most South African gardens, occurring in a wide range of natural and man-made habitats all over the country except in the driest parts of the Karoo and Kalahari. Their major larval food plants are from the geranium and pelargonium families, many of which are popular garden plants too – the species was inadvertently introduced to Europe and the UK with garden plants exported from here and are now considered a pest in those parts. Adults are weak fliers, seldom going higher than a meter above the ground, settling regularly for extended periods and often remaining in the same general area for days on end. Geranium Bronze butterflies are on the wing throughout the year, but they are most abundant in summer.

24 thoughts on “Geranium Bronze

  1. aj vosse

    Difficult to think that such small beauties can be a pest – but then, that’s what happens when you introduce a species to a different habitat! I wonder if they’ll make it to Ireland? πŸ€”

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    1. de Wets Wild Post author

      Very kind of you, thanks Carol. South Africa has an astounding variety of butterflies and looking for and identifying them when we’re out exploring has added another wonderful dimension to our trips.

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    1. de Wets Wild Post author

      If you have Geraniums and Pelargoniums in your SA garden these “pretty pests” will definitely come to visit, Sylvia. Next time you’re here I’m sure you’ll notice them now that you know what to look for.

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  2. Anne

    Now that I have my long-awaited butterfly guide in hand I will have to wait for another ‘explosion’ of butterflies in the garden. This icy weather has put paid to that.

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          1. scrapydo2.wordpress.com

            Ja dit is. Mallard ducks wat ingevoer is vanaf Engeland 1800 en ook later eiers wat uit USA uitgebroei is. Hul het n inheemse eend hier heeltemaal uitgeteel. Dis ook tyd om takbokke wat ook ingevoer is uit te roei. Hier is ook wilde bokke wat jaarliks uitgedun word omdat hul meer skade as goed doen.

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              1. scrapydo2.wordpress.com

                Is so. Hul werk baie hard om dit te behou. Tog glip daar gevalle of dinge deur wat die harde werk met een klap terug stoot. Bv dat n Kiwi wat vrygelaat is gevang word en gedood word agv agterlosigheid van mense wat nie van beter weet nie. Eintlik weet hul maar is net nie lus om om te gee nie. Ons Wood pigeon is bv beskermd en n minister het geskiet en saam gevat op vliegtuig in sy tas.

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    1. de Wets Wild Post author

      You are spot-on again, Janet – they usually only give away their presence when they start fluttering around, otherwise it is very easy to miss them.

      And a lovely weekend to you too, thank you!

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