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Author Topic: It's been slow  (Read 366 times)

Offline ayjay

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It's been slow
« on: June 16, 2017, 10:10:03 PM »
........but the Butterflies over my way are even slower!

Here's a few shots from recent outings, I've taken very few pics so far this year, in fact I've not even bothered to take the camera out 90% of the time and I've not missed many opportunities either.

Scarce Chaser


Southern Damselfly - in cop.

A couple of Keeled Skimmers

« Last Edit: June 16, 2017, 10:14:01 PM by ayjay »


Offline LindaB

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Re: It's been slow
« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2017, 09:12:11 AM »
Lovely pics AJ - well the Scarce chaser and Keeled skimmers were worth getting for sure  :smiley:

Linda

Offline freedie

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Re: It's been slow
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2017, 06:17:03 PM »
Lovely pictures.

I have yet to see Scarce Chaser ever; but at least today I found Southern Damselfly, still at its usual one spot on Anglesey, despite the poor land management at the site (JUST outside an NNR)

Offline ayjay

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Re: It's been slow
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2017, 12:54:03 PM »
Lovely pics AJ - well the Scarce chaser and Keeled skimmers were worth getting for sure  :smiley:

Linda

Thanks Linda, I was more  pleased to get the Southerns in cop! :wink:

I'm definitely worried about the butterflies though, the last few days have been perfect for them but I'm seeing so few. I don't go to too many hotspots, but I've seen 21 species (4 are one-offs) in Holmsley Inclosure  where I spend a lot of time, yesterday I saw 1 White Admiral, first of the year, 1 Large White, again first of the year and a Peacock, and that was all in about a 1.5 mile walk. I saw my first Meadow Browns of the year the previous day, just two, and two Speckled Woods as I drove away.

Seen my first two Southern Hawkers of the year there in the last couple of days too.

Offline ayjay

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Re: It's been slow
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2017, 01:06:32 PM »
Lovely pictures.

I have yet to see Scarce Chaser ever; but at least today I found Southern Damselfly, still at its usual one spot on Anglesey, despite the poor land management at the site (JUST outside an NNR)

I like Anglesey, so many different habitats in a small island: is that where you're based?

My son was at Uni in Bangor which included a *Year in industry* at Wylfa, so we had a few holidays up there.

I sometimes despair at the management tactics of some of our Nature organisations, Holmsley Inclosure has recently been the subject of a large project between the Forestry Commission and Butterfly Conservation, they've cleared some areas of dense Silver Birch to make more habitat for Butterflies, all very laudable but I can't help thinking that it's just made more space for the butterflies to fly around, with a little more effort and the planting of some  larval foodplants it could be so much more.

They (the FC) also insist on clearing the pathside vegetation in there once a year, not all of it at once, selected areas are done on rotation, it must impinge greatly on caterpillar and pupae survival.

One little spot that I loved was a confluence of several paths, the sun beat down along the main path all morning and really warmed up the corner, even on a poor weather day you could kick a bracken stem and several Dragons, Damsels, Butterflies and Moths would appear. The FC cut down about six mature trees which were situated perpendicular to the main path with the result that that corner no longer warms up, it's now virtually devoid of any resident insects, it looks nice though.   :angry:


Offline freedie

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Re: It's been slow
« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2017, 06:46:48 PM »
I'm based on the Lleyn Peninsula south of Anglesey. Could your son have been tutored by my good friend Nigel Brown who retired last year?

Yes I know Cemlyn and Erddreiniog well; and now Malltraeth Marsh which has "come good" these last few years.

Odonata seen this weekend included Southern Damselflies, Hairy Dragonflies and Scarce Blue-tailed Damselflies. At least today I have seen some more butterflies, with Dark Green Fritillaries on Cilan Headland, (Also found a colony of Large Mason Bees nearby ~ a known site).

Offline ayjay

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Re: It's been slow
« Reply #6 on: June 18, 2017, 09:50:15 PM »
I'm based on the Lleyn Peninsula south of Anglesey. Could your son have been tutored by my good friend Nigel Brown who retired last year?

The Lleyn Peninsula is very nice too! (Aren't we supposed to call it the Llyn Peninsula now?). :shocked: :wink:

I don't know the name of his tutors, he has a B.Sc and M.Sc in Chemistry if that fits the bill for Nigel.

I saw another three butterflies this afternoon (total number), two new species for the year, Silver Washed Fritillary and Small Skipper.

On the route I walked this afternoon, I would have been counting the butterflies in hundreds two years ago, much reduced in the same area last year, possibly due to the mowing and shredding of the pathside vegetation - I can't prove that, but it doesn't stop me from thinking it.

I also can't help thinking that as I've now seen four new species for the year in the last couple of days there may have been some sort of natural hiatus in their seasons due to the weather, with the earlier fliers dying off and nothing taking their place for a few days.  :undecided:

 It really has been strange, I'm used to seeing a lot of butterflies as I walk around the Inclosure and I've never known such a bleak spell in good weather like we've had over the last couple of weeks.

Offline ayjay

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Re: It's been slow
« Reply #7 on: June 21, 2017, 06:28:49 PM »
Three Golden Ringed this morning and dozens of Keeled Skimmers around now .One Emperor at a different site, and occasional sightings still of BB Chaser.

.........and there's a few summer butterfly species now appearing, White Admirals, Silver Washed Frits, Ringlets, Large Skippers and Meadow Browns all in evidence around the inclosure and in other places too.  :handclap

Offline ayjay

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Re: It's been slow
« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2017, 10:13:27 PM »
Settled down to do "The Big Butterfly Count " this morning and a really fresh and bright Brown Hawker appeared and spent the whole time I was there cruising a clearing in the Inclosure.