Butterfly Survey 14.08.15


Two commas feeding on a nectar rich late flowering veronicastrum. These lea like butterflies lay their eggs on nettles and hops. Their numbers have declined with the loss of hop gardens.


A restless clouded yellow in the orchard meadow, a summer migrant from Europe. Still no sighting of the silver washed fritillary of two summers ago alas. This large orange and black fritillary needs violets in woodland to survive.

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Butterfly survey 31.08.15

IMG_20150731_131318911 The last couple of weeks have really seen numbers pick up in the meadows.

This is a small copper.

IMG_20150731_131022774This is a common blue attempting to mate with a female who seemed less keen and kept turning away from his advances .IMG_20150731_130559917   This very fresh peacock compared starkly with a poor battered one in the high garden that looked liked shredded paper (not pictured)

IMG_20150725_140423350     One of many gatekeepers. This should be the time for white admiral s who love honeysuckle so keep a look out. They are brown and white.

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Correction to last blog.


Hi sorry for the confusion… This is a meadow brown not a gate keeper as it lacks the eyes on the pale area.

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Butterfly survey 10.07.15



The numbers of butterflies soared with the temperatures. 150 in total. With 9 species. The best day since we started recording.

This red admiral’s markings were glowing as the light shone through its wings as it fed on brambles in the woods.


A comma resting on the telegraph pole in the field. They are nettle feeders and use hops too.


Gate keepers can look like meadow brown and small heath but theirdistinctive pale wing bar helps with ID.


The diminutive ringlet tolerates shady edges of grassand its darker outline in flight help to differentiate it from other browns.


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Butterfly survey 03.07.2015


Love is in the air. With temperatures heading for 30 degrees  a small skipper scents the air hoping to attract a mate.


Two meadow browns get it together on the prairie. The female will then, with her characteristic lilting flight lay her eggs on the grasses.

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Butterfly survey 26.06.15



A small skipper basking in the morning sun. These little butterflies are never still quivering even at rest with a fast dashing flight they can be mistaken for a moth. They lay their eggs in the sheath of the grass stem and overwinter there as a little group of tiny caterpillars, so most are lost when the meadows are cut annually



This is the flight season of the meadow brown. This female was taking a quick rest between egg laying on the grass in the orchard meadow. The 2nd brood of caterpillars hatch and overwinter low down so more escape the mowing than the skippers.

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Butterfly survey 12.06.15


A Speckled wood guarding a patch of sunlight on the track to the wood.


A pair of common blues were courting and feeding on the prairie.


The odd peacock is about, they look new and shiny so maybe newly hatched from eggs laid by early emerged adults who hibernated .


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