Thursday, 30 July 2015

Norfolk Butterflies and Reptiles

Holt Country Park in North Norfolk is an excellent spot to find a couple of butterfly species, so I had a few hours here on Monday.

The first species is Silver-washed Fritillary. Several individuals were seen straight away in the car park feeding around the Buddlehia bushes.

Silver-washed Fritillary

 We walked down to the small pond, where there were several more fritillaries, including 2 females of the form valezina. As you can see, the markings on this individual are the same as the more usual form, but the colour is very different. Apparently, 10 - 15% of females can be of this form, and its more common in central and southern Britain. See the Butterfly Conservation website here for more details about this species.

Silver-washed Fritillary, valezina form 

The other key species at this site is the White Admiral (see here for details). We saw 2 individuals, but I didn't manage to get a photo on this visit- more reason for a return visit!

When we returned to the car park, we spotted a sign warning visitors about Adders that were present in the area. We were very lucky to spot this individual curled up about 1m away from the sign! I've seen one before, on Big Moor in Derbyshire, but this was the first one I've managed to get a photo of. See here for details about this species on the Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Group website.


Whilst looking at the Adder, we noticed this Slow-worm! It too, was sunbathing just by the edge of the car park. This is my first ever record. See here for details.


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