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Butterflies

Saturday, June 29th 2019

Data from all the bird ringing activities is sent to the BTO.  Information from the moth trapping goes to the VC65 recorder.  'Dragon and Damsel' (dragonflies and damselflies) sightings are forwarded to the appropriate person.  And talking of sightings, a Banded Demoiselle was seen in the Scrapes.  If you see it then please let the reserve managers know, as we are still trying to obtain a photograph of it.  This is a new species for the reserve.

Butterflies are also monitored and results of transects and first and last sightings are collated to be registered with the various butterfly conservation organisations.  Catherine, Christine and Tim were out on Friday walking around the whole of the reserve.

A Holly Blue was spotted but it fluttered away before a photograph could be taken.  We do not get many records of this butterfly at Foxglove, even though we have plenty of Holly and Ivy on which the larvae feed.  Spindle is also a possible food source.  These two photographs were taken in a town garden and help to illustrate the differences between it and a Common Blue.

Common Blue was also added to the list.  The colour differences and the underwing pattern can be compared.

There had also been a recent hatch of Large Skipper butterflies.  These can often be seen feeding from thistles.

Many people have commented on the large number of Painted Lady Butterflies seen in Foxglove.  These are migrants coming from the desert fringes of North Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia.  Some are looking in very poor condition after their long journey, whilst others are pristine.  They will breed during our summer and the adults will hatch out to feed on many flowers in the autumn but they are unable to survive our winters.

Many thanks to the 'butterfly team' for carrying out the butterfly survey.


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