Saturday, February 17
Category Archives: Butterfly
Report from Adrienne Stevenson;
Last Sunday, a small group enjoyed a most enjoyable and informative walk around the Ring led by Brianne Reeves. After a rather grey start to the day, (when we began to wonder just how many butterflies we would see), the clouds parted and we were blessed with blue skies, bright sunshine and the warmth that finally encouraged numerous butterflies to emerge from their hiding places. Brianne is such an engaging guide and her enthusiasm and knowledge had us all spellbound and even the young children amongst the group were engaged throughout the walk. We would like to thank Brianne so much for agreeing to give up a Sunday morning to take us round.
So what did we see? Well, there were numerous small blue butterflies – Chalk Hill Blue, Common Blue and Holly Blue and by the end of the walk we were even getting quite good at working out which were which! We saw Meadow Brown, Speckled Wood, and learnt how the Wall Brown often likes to land on paths. There were Small Heath Butterflies which we discovered flop to one side when resting! I will add a list of the varieties at the end, but one lovely discovery was The Silver-washed Fritillary – very beautiful and which we understand is not so frequently seen.
However, Brianne’s walks are not just confined to butterflies and we discovered the names of the numerous plants around the Reserve. We found newly emerged ladybirds that most of us confessed we would have walked straight past! Whilst amid all this our attention was drawn to the call of a Kestrel, Greenfinch or the Chiffchaff.
All in all we had a most absorbing time, left all our troubles behind and immersed ourselves completely in the wonder and beauty of our beautiful hill. Thank you once again Brianne, it couldn’t have been better!
List of Butterfly species observed (I hope I have them all!):
Some of the other species observed:
6 spotted Burnet Moths
Various other moths
Bees – various
Some of the numerous Plants identified:
Old Man’s Beard
First views of Speckled Wood butterflies for the year in shaded avenues of the the reserve. This was one of three we saw today.
It was nice to watch some courting behaviour between these two Peacock butterflies. The male (presumably) continuously prodded at the female with its front legs
First sighting of a Small Tortoiseshell on Lancing Ring today
Seen between clumps of shrubs on the lower slopes, south of the Dewpond