Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Sightings of the Year!!!

Today was the last day of the summer holidays, the sun was shining and yesterday's strong winds had dropped, so I decided to pop down to Linacre for  a few hours to try and get some photos of the myriad insects that are usually on offer. I'm very glad I did, because in just one and a half hours I notched up 10 species of butterfly, including 2 "Linacre Lifers" in the shape of a CLOUDED YELLOW and a Painted Lady!!
Clouded Yellow (male I think)

Painted Lady
Both these species of butterfly are annual migrants to Britain from southern Europe and North Africa. Painted Ladies are usually seen in reasonable numbers every year, but Clouded Yellows are much rarer. This year, however, has been a bumper year with individuals seen across the country. Several individual have been recorded in Derbyshire as well, see here for details, but I was still VERY pleased to spot this individual today. Not only is it anew record for Linacre, but also a new species for me in Britain.

As well as these butterflies I also managed to find the following: Speckled Wood (5), Meadow Brown (5), Small Copper (5),  Small Tortoiseshell (1), Comma (1), Peacock (1), Large White (2), Small White (2) and another species that I've yet to identify- oooh!!

Comma (1st Linacre record this year)

Whilst looking at the butterflies, there was also a hawker species of dragonfly flying about, lots of hoverflies, bumblebees and some lovely birds including the flock of 15 Crossbills seen at the weekend, a possible family group of 4 Common Buzzards right overhead, 3 Swallows, 2 squabbling Kingfishers on the middle reservoir (my first record of more than one bird together) and Linnets, that were heard, but not seen (first Linacre record of 2013). Not a bad hour and a half, by anyone's standards.

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