You're right, Buggy - that Red Admiral has some faint blue spots and qualifies for your specially named aberration!
I don't think it's the same one as before, but it's a bit worn and difficult to tell.
The Small White was a bit unexpected, David - I don't think I've seen one this late before. Not the impact and charisma of a Holly Blue, though!
Thanks, Andrew - keep looking, they are probably hiding somewhere. Monday 30th October
: There was some wet ice on the car windscreen first thing this morning as forecast, with the air temperature around 4 degrees at around 8 o'clock. However, there was lots of sunshine and no wind, and things warmed up a bit by late morning. Once again the Red Admirals were well spread out and in fact the total today was sightly higher than yesterday with a dozen seen. There are no longer any brand new examples, and some are getting really worn - not surprising considering some of the aerial battles I've witnessed recently. There were still a couple of Commas too. I also came across yet another Holly Blue, but I failed to spot it down on the ground, promptly disturbed it, and sent it flying high into a willow where it resolutely stayed. Hopefully it won't go far. I have had some amazing luck with them recently, so I can't really complain.
I noticed yesterday, and again today, that one or two of the Red Admirals were flying low over the nettlebeds. Though they never stopped longer than a second or two, this looked suspiciously like egg-laying behaviour and I investigated further. Only a minute or two searching part of the nettle patch produced results - two tiny green eggs laid on leaves not far apart. I imagine there could be quite a few more, though what future they have is debatable. I will keep an eye on them and look for others. Red Admirals are known to have managed to go through the winter as caterpillars in sheltered spots, so who knows?
Even at this time of year, there is always something of interest to inject some life into the season!